Rested and Rejuvenated, Coyotes Primed to 'Get Going'

And, back to work.

The Coyotes have returned from the bye week and All-Star break with two days of practice to pace their dive back into a regular season schedule that has 31 games remaining.

Rested and rejuvenated. Ready.

"Anytime you get a week away from the rink it's always nice on your body," saidJakob Chychrun following Monday's practice at Gila River Arena. "We all took advantage of it and we're excited to be back and get things going."

Wednesday night calls for a plunge back into game action against the Ducks in Anaheim.

"We understand how big these 31 games are,"Conor Garlandsaid, looking ahead. "I know I'm ready because I want to get those games underway, I want to get going here and I know the boys want to get going and start winning again."

That game in Anaheim will spark a stretch of three games in four nights leading into a demanding 14-game month of February, making the latest period of rest all the more important.

"I think mentally to just get away from the rink, you do your best not to think about hockey and take some time," Chychrun added. "It's going to be a tough mental grind here down the stretch, you want to make sure you're fresh and ready for it."

Chychrun refreshed his mind and body with a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico with a few teammates, while Garland took his girlfriend to Disneyland, where they met up with Michael Grabner's family.

"I just got to spend some time away with no hockey talk or anything, so my girlfriend was happy about that," Garland said with a grin. "We relaxed and that was really it, it's nice to get away from hockey for a bit, but then 4-5 days in you want to get going again, and I think everyone kind of felt like that."

There is a lingering distaste for the way the team transitioned into its time off, suffering back-to-back losses to divisional opponents, which Garland said made the players a bit hungrier than usual as they enjoyed their time away.

"We kind of limped into the break a little there with the last two losses and we want to bounce back from that, especially with two Pacific teams, so we feel like we're ready to go."

Three of the Coyotes' first four games back will be against Pacific foes.

"We have a lot of games here that are going to be big four-point swings, division games are something that we really need to bear down on and do a better job of," Chychrun said. "Those two that we dropped before the break were big points that we missed out on, so we need to make up for those and get off to a good start right away."

Going back a calendar year, the Coyotes found themselves in a relatively similar situation as they pressed for a playoff spot in a tight divisional race.

They expect that previous adventure to only help their approach this time around.

Even though they fell short of their goal to make the playoffs last season, the team is embracing it as growth through experience, a positive step in development.

"We took every game like it was a playoff game and we're excited to be able to do that again this year," Garland said, looking back to last year's stretch run. "Knowing that each game is important, whether it's against a division team or not, and with the way the division is, all of those games are going be vastly important."

Mind over matter.

"We're a confident group, we understand our potential and where we can get to and we haven't gotten there yet," added Garland. "We're a hungry team, we're determined, and I think that's a dangerous combination."

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