Anthony Perez | Dave Vest GLENDALE – Anton Babchuk’s goal with 2:08 left in overtime spoiled a furious comeback by the Coyotes and lifted the Carolina Hurricanes to a 4-3 win on Saturday night at Jobing.com Arena.
After a scoreless first period, the Hurricanes (4-3-0) struck first when Patrick Dwyer scored on a short-handed breakaway goal at the 4:17 mark of the second period to give his team a 1-0 lead.
Jussi Jokinen beat Coyotes goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov with a power-play rebound just over five minutes later to up Carolina’s lead to 2-0.
Sensing his team needed a spark, Phoenix enforcer Paul Bissonnette dropped the gloves with Carolina’s Jay Harrison just moments after Jokinen’s goal. Bissonnette won the fight, and that seemed to spark some momentum for Phoenix (2-2-2).
“We needed it (the fight) because we went out at the start of the period and the power play just dragged all the energy out of us,” Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippett said. “Bissonnette did a great job; he jumped out and at least got a little excitement in the game.”
Eighty-one seconds into the third period, though, Sergei Samsonov extended Carolina’s lead to three when his wrist shot found the back of the net.
Game over, right? Not quite.
Ilya Bryzgalov (left) defends the goal against Carolina's Eric Staal. Photo by Getty Images.
Coyotes center Kyle Turris, who entered the game with zero points, ended Hurricanes goalie Cam Ward’s shutout bid at the 5:45 mark of the third period with his first goal of the season, a slick snap shot from the right circle. He followed it with another goal with just 2:02 left in the third period.
Not content with a two-point game, Turris set up the game-tying goal less than 30 seconds after his second goal by winning a puck battle with Ward behind the net and quickly feeding a pass to Scottie Upshall who swept the puck into the empty net at 18:20.
“I kind of tried to hit his stick and give him a hard time when he played the puck,” Turris said. “Luckily enough, he ended up missing it and I just tried to throw it in front of the net.”
Bryzgalov stopped 37 of the 41 shots he faced in the losing effort, while Ward stopped 36 of the 39 shots he faced.
After the Coyotes failed to capitalize on a few scoring chances, Carolina defenseman Joni Pitkanen slid a cross-slot pass to teammate Anton Babchuk near the left post, and Babchuk tapped the puck past Coyotes goalie Ilya Bryzgalov at 2:52 of overtime.
• Forward Kyle Turris scored his first NHL goal since March 17, 2009, and his two goal-outing matched a career-high, which he also accomplished twice in 2008-09. Turris joked that a haircut he received on Friday may have had something to do with his three-point performance. Click here to listen to an interview with Turris recorded after the game.
• The Coyotes dominated the Hurricanes in the face-off circle, winning 40 of 59 draws. Center Andrew Ebbett led the way by winning 10 of 11 face-offs.
• Captain Shane Doan served the second game of a three-game suspension. Defenseman Ed Jovanovski, regularly an alternate captain, again wore the "C" on his sweater in Doan's absence.
• Forward Ray Whitney played his first game against Carolina since leaving the Hurricanes this summer after five seasons. Whitney played 16:15 and took four shots on goal.
• The Coyotes will fly to Montreal on Sunday. Phoenix's next game is on Monday vs. the Canadiens at the Bell Centre. The puck drops at 4:30 p.m. (Arizona time). The game can be seen on Fox Sports Arizona and can be heard on the Coyotes Radio Network.
"If you would have told me with three minutes left in that game that we'd get a point I would have been jumping up and down. But I look at the big picture, and how we're going to be successful as a team. And that wasn't good enough tonight."
"It is never fun to be in a slump or not score on your opportunities. It felt great, and it is definitely a confidence booster to get a couple points tonight."
"The guys did what they needed to do. It’s been mentally challenging for everybody, just with all the travel that we’ve been through. The guys worked hard to get this 'W' tonight."
• Oct. 23, 2010: CAR 4, PHX 3 (OT)
1 - 0 CAR
2 - 0 CAR
3 - 0 CAR
3 - 1 CAR
3 - 2 CAR
3 - 3 Tie