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CALGARY - The Coyotes played Tuesday night’s game against the Calgary Flames like a team with something to prove, and they ended up proving it with a 4-2 victory at the Pengrowth Saddledome.
Ten days after letting the Flames dominate them on their home ice, the Coyotes returned the favor and won a challenging game in a hostile environment.
Derek Morris, Ed Jovanovski and Steven Reinprecht all scored their first goals of the season, and captain Shane Doan chipped in his team-high seventh goal as Phoenix evened its record at 5-5-0 and snapped a three-game road losing streak.
Goalie Ilya Bryzgalov stopped 27 of 29 shots, and made several clutch saves in the third period to keep Phoenix ahead.
Jovanovski’s goal came nearly 12 minutes into the second period on Phoenix’s first power play. Flames goalie Miikka Kiprusoff partially blocked Jovanovski’s shot from the top of the right circle, but the puck got past Kiprusoff at 11:52 and Phoenix went ahead to stay at 3-2.
Reinprecht’s goal, a back-hander scored with exactly two minutes left in the second period, capped a well-executed odd-man rush for Phoenix. Kevin Porter and Mikkel Boedker assisted on the goal , which put the Coyotes ahead 4-2.
Jovanovski, who notched 51 points last season but none in the first nine games this season, said the victory was important.
“Any time you win on the road it's really rewarding,” Jovanovski said. “The guys worked hard and we stuck with it and we got results from it.”
Trailing 4-2, the Flames came at the Coyotes hard in third period, outshooting them 15-7, but Bryzgalov made several great stops, including an amazing leg-pad save on a short-handed, two-on-zero Calgary rush 70 seconds into the period. Wayne Primeau and Rene Bourque charged toward Bryzgalov, and Bourque took a pass from Primeau and tried to push the puck past Bryzgalov but failed.
Bryzgalov said he figured Primeau was going to pass and guessed correctly.
“Wayne Primeau spent lots of time on the ice killing the penalty (and) it seemed like he was running out of gas,” Bryzgalov said. “I was pretty sure he’d make a pass to his partner. I don’t know, but something clicked in my head. I was pretty sure he was not going to pass it back and he would attack the net the net by himself.”
The game started poorly for Phoenix as Calgary took a 1-0 lead before it was four minutes old. Morris, however, scored a momentum-shifting goal midway through the period and Calgary’s bid for another resounding victory over Phoenix was thwarted. Morris beat Kiprusoff with a powerful slap shot from the right as the Coyotes were killing a penalty.
The Coyotes took a 2-1 lead later in the first period when Doan received a pass and then put a deke on Kiprusoff that moved the Flames goaltender off the post. Doan snuck the puck in the short side. Doan, who had a goal, an assist, three shots, three hits and won six of seven faceoffs, was voted the No. 1 star, and Coyotes Head Coach Wayne Gretzky agreed with the choice.
“Shane’s had a good year and a good start and I thought it was his best game,” Gretzky said. “He was really dominant in the first period and scored a nice goal. It was a nice victory for us … in a tough place to play.”
Trailing 2-1, Calgary responded with 16 seconds left in the first period. Mark Giordano released a shot from the left point that deflected off David Moss then Dustin Boyd’s skate, pinball style, and beat Bryzgalov to tie the score at 2.
• Center Garth Murray made his debut with the Coyotes, and blocked five shots and delivered two hits in 11 minutes of ice time.
• Coyotes defenseman Ken Klee left the game early in the first period because of a lower-body injury. He returned after the first intermission and finished the game.
• In a bizarre sequence of events late in the first period, Coyotes forward Daniel Carcillo and Calgary's Brandon Prust dropped the gloves before a faceoff at center ice in preparation for a fight. At the same time, Murray and Calgary's Eric Nystrom squared off before the first duo could swap a punch. Murray and Nystrom continued their fight while Carcillo and Prust decided not to duel after all.
• The Coyotes won 32 of 58 faceoffs.
• Reinprecht’s goal was the 300th point of his NHL career.
• Olli Jokinen played in his 386th consecutive game, the second-longest active streak in the NHL.
• Coyotes rookie Kyle Turris was a healthy scratch for the first time in his short NHL career. He is expected to play Thursday at Vancouver.
• Flames defenseman Robyn Regehr returned to the lineup after missing the previous game because of an undisclosed injury.