October 29, 2011 12:15 pm

Coyotes can be hard to handle

The Kings and Phoenix Coyotes are certainly well-acquainted. Tonight’s game will be the teams’ fourth meeting in 39 days, if you include the two split-squad preseason games. The Coyotes, expected to be in a tough fight in the Pacific Division, are off to a solid 4-3-2 start and are 2-0-1 in their last three. The Coyotes can certainly score goals, and they’ve put a total of 12 on the board in their last three games, and they’ve added a couple of pieces at forward in the last 24 hours, as they acquired Cal O’Reilly from Nashville for a fourth-round draft pick and claimed Brett MacLean off waivers from Winnipeg. Terry Murray is mindful of the challenge that the Coyotes can bring to his defense.

MURRAY: “They’re a good hockey club. They are similar, in a sense, as Dallas, where they can play extremely well below the hash marks in the offensive zone. They make a lot of plays from the back of the net, and you have to have awareness to that. That requires tracker responsibilities, to be right there, right now, and not drift away from the man who just passed the puck, because you know it’s coming back to that man eventually. That closeness to your coverage is critical. Bottom line, trust your teammates on that 3-on-3 look down low.’’

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