By NHL.com | Associated Press
SAN JOSE --
The Coyotes capped the 2010-11 regular season with a 3-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night at the HP Pavilion.
Phoenix (43-26-13) finished the season with 99 points, which means it will place either sixth or seventh in the final Western Conference standings depending on the outcome of the Detroit at Chicago game on Sunday, which will be televised on NBC at 9:30 a.m. (PST). If Detroit wins, the Coyotes will finish sixth; if Chicago wins, the Coyotes will finish seventh.
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to view the conference standings.
If Phoenix finishes sixth, it will play Detroit in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. If Phoenix finishes seventh, it will play San Jose.
Sharks center Joe Pavelski scored his 20th goal of the season and Antti Niemi made 35 saves as San Jose wrapped up the No. 2 seed in the playoffs with its win over Phoenix on Saturday night.
Ian White and Logan Couture also scored for the Sharks (48-25-9).
The Coyotes got their lone goal when Lauri Korpikoski
blocked Jason Demers’ point shot, skated in alone on Niemi and beat him with a wrist shot for his 19th goal with 11:24 left in the third period.
But Couture put the game away when he scored his 32nd goal on a power play with just 1:31 to go, just seconds after Ilya Bryzgalov robbed Sharks captain Joe Thornton with a spectacular, sprawling save.
Bryzgalov stopped 34 of 37 shots.
The Sharks broke up a scoreless game with two goals in the second period. The first came after a relentless shift when they kept the puck in the offensive zone for more than a minute. Bryzgalov made tough saves on Dany Heatley and Kyle Wellwood, but the Coyotes were unable to clear the puck.
White then fired a shot from the point that beat Bryzgalov for his second goal in as many nights after failing to score in his first 21 games with San Jose.
|Photo by Getty Images.
San Jose added its second goal late in the period with Martin Hanzal
was sent off for roughing. Pavelski got the puck in front of the net and beat Bryzgalov with a shot just before being flattened by Coyotes captain Shane Doan
to make it 2-0. The goal made the Sharks the only team in the league with seven 20-goal scorers.
Niemi made sure the game stayed that way heading into the third when he made a sharp stop on Radim Vrbata
in the closing seconds of the second period with Phoenix on the power play.
The Coyotes had the better of the play early in a scoreless first period, recording the first six shots of the game. But the Sharks had the best chance early when Bryzgalov stopped Scott Nichol from right in front of the net with a pad save.
► EDITOR'S NOTE:
Dave Vest of phoenixcoyotes.com compiled this recap.
Trailing 2-1, Coyotes winger Radim Vrbata
ripped a shot past Sharks goalie Antti Niemi from the left circle. The shot, however, was just a bit too high and hit the crossbar. About 10 seconds later, Niemi made a nice pad save on a wraparound attempt by Coyotes winger Ray Whitney
to preserve the lead.
• The Coyotes finished the regular season with 99 points. That is the second highest total for points earned in a season in franchise history. The Coyotes earned 107 in 2009-10.
• Despite missing 10 games, captain Shane Doan
finished the season as the team's leading scorer with 60 points, one more than defenseman Keith Yandle
. Doan was the team’s only 20-goal scorer.
• Forwards Eric Belanger
and Lee Stempniak
, and defenseman Keith Yandle
appeared in all 82 games this season. Yandle owns the team’s current longest iron man streak with 173 consecutive games played.
• The Coyotes scratched Mikkel Boedker
, Ryan Hollweg
, Brett MacLean
, Andy Miele
and David Schlemko
• The Coyotes' next game is TBA. Check back to phoenixcoyotes.com on Sunday for updated playoff information.