Tonight is the big night for the Phoenix Coyotes.
The team returns to Glendale with a 2-1 record and an arena that is officially sold out with more standing room tickets being sold. Kudos to the people of Phoenix and the staff of the Coyotes in getting this done. Yes I know people are criticizing the team since the tickets are discounted but that is not the point. The point is that people bought these tickets and are coming to the game meaning this team will have support if it stays.
But this game is also big for another reason. Phoenix is coming off its first loss of the season against the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday night and will be looking to impress the home crowd. Ilya Bryzgalov will be back in net after backup Jason LaBarbera played stellar in the recent loss. Petr Prucha is day to day after being hit by Patrick Kaleta and is hoping to play in tonight's opener. Prucha was an integral part of the victory over Pittsburgh on Wednesday.
The Coyotes welcome the Columbus Blue Jackets in who are coming off a 6-3 loss where newest San Jose Shark Dany Heatley had a hat trick. Like the Coyotes they will definitely be looking to get back on the winning side of things. As always the Coyotes will need to keep an eye on Rick Nash who can tear the opposition apart single handedly.
Phoenix will be wearing their white jerseys tonight to go along with the Whiteout. It is a big night for the Phoenix Coyotes and they will come out with a jump in their step. But if they play the game they did in the first two games then they will have success. Hopefully this is the first of many sellouts this season for Phoenix as they look to get respect around the NHL by winning big games and maybe, just maybe, getting a look at the post season. But for now they should be focusing on tonight's game. What a memorable one it should be.