It’s no secret that the Phoenix Coyotes have struggled to find consistency — the positive kind, at least — since starting the season on a tear.
The Coyotes added another chapter to their midseason lull on Tuesday.
Despite a stellar performance by goalie Mike Smith and the continuation of a point streak by red-hot forward Antoine Vermette, the Coyotes fell 3-1 to the Dallas Stars in front of 12,257 fans at Jobing.com Arena after jumping out to a lead.
Here’s a closer look at the loss by the numbers:
Despite their sporadic play of late, the Coyotes sit just one point back of the Vancouver Canucks for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Phoenix has won back-to-back games just once since Dec. 12 — taking consecutive home games over Vancouver and New Jersey on Jan. 16 and 18. The Coyotes have had a pair of three-game losing streaks since then, as well as a pair of two-game skids and a four-game pointless streak.
The Coyotes have managed just five wins in their last 14 games, but have managed to stay alive in the Western Conference playoff race.
The Coyotes have alternated wins and losses in their last seven games, dating back to a Jan. 22 loss to the Calgary Flames.
Vermette scored his ninth goal in the Coyotes’ last 11 games on a breakaway midway through the second period. Vermette also has a team-long eight-game point streak. He’s scored 21 goals on the season and has 11 points in Phoenix’s last eight games.
The Coyotes managed 13 takeaways against the Stars on Tuesday, but weren’t able to turn that into much offense.
Smith almost singlehandedly kept Phoenix in Tuesday’s game, making 38 saves — including a number of highlight-reel stops.