The Phoenix Coyotes will once again face the Detroit Red Wings in the opening round of the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, 2011 Edition. The two teams met last spring in a great series that went all the way to a seventh game before the Coyotes hopes were crushed in a 6-1 loss. This year will be different (or maybe it won't, we don't really know).
Don't worry if you haven't paid much attention to hockey this season. With all the ownership drama and the obstructionist meddling from the Goldwater Institute it's been hard to fully commit to this "will they stay, will they go" team. Hang your head in shame if you must but don't be so prideful that you avoid jumping on the playoffs bandwagon -- there's always room for one more.
The series kicks off Wednesday in Detroit with Game 2 also in the motor city on Saturday where Eminem is rumored to be making an on-ice appearance rapping about the prowess of his gritty home town while riding on top of a Chrysler-built Zamboni. While that might not actually happen, we are guaranteed to see dead octopus thrown on the ice in a tradition that makes about as much sense Eminem singing (anything).
The series returns to Phoenix for two home games at Jobbing.com arena on Monday and Wednesday next week. No word yet if Darcy Olsen from the Goldwater Institute will be in net taking slap shots with no pads during pregame warm ups.
Here's the full TV schedule for the playoff series that promises to deliver hard hitting, fast skating action:
Wednesday, April 13th, 2011 7:00 PM Phoenix at Detroit VERSUS
Saturday, April 16th, 2011 1:00 PM Phoenix at Detroit NBC (HD)
Monday, April 18th, 2011 7:30 PM Detroit at Phoenix VERSUS
Wednesday, April 20th, 2011 7:30 PM Detroit at Phoenix VERSUS
Friday, April 22nd, 2011 7:00 PM Phoenix at Detroit VERSUS
Sunday, April 24th, 2011 TBD Detroit at Phoenix TBD
Wednesday, April 27th, 2011 TBD Phoenix at Detroit TBD
*All times local
Coyotes blog Five for Howling has all details of this great series and a full snake-throwing primer.