Arizona Coyotes Arizona Coyotes Home Gila River Arena

Game Recap

Coyotes 3, Blackhawks 2, OT

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 1:49 AM
Share with your Friends

Coyotes 3, Blackhawks 2, OT
Chicago Blackhawks 2, Phoenix Coyotes 3

By Jerry Brown | Correspondent
The marketing slogan for the Coyotes this season has been "Hockey the Hard Way." Their first 2012 postseason win was a living, breathing example.

After coming within 14.2 seconds of a regulation win over Chicago, the Coyotes had to regroup and beat the hard-charging Blackhawks all over again. Center Martin Hanzal, who hadn't scored in 24 games, deflected an Adrian Aucoin shot past Chicago goalie Corey Crawford 9:29 into overtime to give the Coyotes a 3-2 win in a Western Conference quarterfinals opener Thursday night at Arena.

Hanzal's goal (see KEY MOMENT below) was only the second OT goal in franchise playoff history since the team moved from Winnipeg to Phoenix in 1996. Shane Doan scored the OT winner in Game 2 of the opening round in 1999, a series the Coyotes lost to St. Louis in seven games on an overtime goal by Pierre Turgeon. That was the last OT game in team history until Thursday.

The Coyotes lost leading scorer Radim Vrbata early in the first period when he took a hit by Chicago's Andrew Shaw and banged his head against the glass. Vrbata had a career-high 35 goals this season. Phoenix Head Coach Dave Tippett said Vrbata's status is day-to-day. But Phoenix's secondary scorers stepped up with their top sniper out.

The Coyotes answered a Jonathan Toews goal with second-period tallies by Taylor Pyatt and Antoine Vermette and carried that 2-1 lead into the final minute before Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook capped an all-out assault on the Phoenix net by scoring the game-tying goal.

The Coyotes were 33-1 when leading after two periods during the regular season, but couldn't hold off the Blackhawks with six attackers on the ice. Smith made a great save on Seabrook with 30 seconds left, but Chicago kept coming. Patrick Kane's redirected shot pinged off the right post behind Smith and came right to Seabrook, who had half the net to shoot at and didn't miss to take the air out of a rocking, WhiteOut-clad crowd of 17,138.

But after the Blackhawks had the first five shots of overtime and forced Smith to be sharp in the first three minutes, the Coyotes began to control the tempo, took the final five shots and were rewarded.

"We had some momentum throughout the whole third period and it took us all of 20 minutes to get one by Smith," Seabrook said. "(In overtime) they were getting pucks to the net, they were getting bodies to the front trying get an ugly goal … and Hanzal got an ugly goal."

Smith, who allowed only two goals and made 190 saves in the Coyotes' final five regular- season games, stopped 43 of 45 shots. He now has six straight wins and is 8-0-1 in his last nine games.

Crawford finished with 31 saves for the Blackhawks.

Toews, who missed the final 22 games of the regular season after suffering a concussion, left no doubt that he was ready for duty by striking just 4:04 into play and added an assist on Seabrook's tying goal.

Playing on a line between Kane and Marian Hossa for the first time in two years, Toews corralled the puck from a sharp angle and lifted a backhander up and over the glove of Smith for his 16th career playoff goal.

Toews absorbed a thunderous hit from Doan behind the Phoenix net in the second period but emerged none the worse for wear, charging right back in front of the Coyotes crease to attempt a deflection of a shot. He played more than 24 minutes.

The Coyotes were credited with 22 hits in the first period but still had trouble slowing down the pace of the Blackhawks. Phoenix found its forecheck in the second period and got even after a ferocious shift that pinned the Blackhawks in their zone for nearly a minute.

Defenseman Sean O'Donnell, playing without a stick, tried to hand-pass the puck toward Crawford in the crease -- but defense partner Niklas Hjalmarsson chose to push the puck toward the backboards. Daymond Langkow ran it down and backhanded the puck in front to Pyatt, who pitchforked a point-blank shot over Crawford at 7:38 for his fifth career playoff goal.

Photo by Getty Images.

Chicago complained that the Coyotes had six players on the ice during the sequence, but those pleas went unanswered. Pyatt now has three goals in his last two games after scoring only seven in his first 72.

"We had turnover trouble there. We were standing still with the puck and we didn't advance it," Chicago Head Coach Joel Quenneville said. "We had long shifts in our end and we got tired a couple of times."

The Coyotes kept up the pressure and after failing on a pair of power plays, took the lead on the rush. Raffi Torres took a Keith Yandle pass in stride, faked a shot and found an onrushing Vermette coming late. Vermette pounded the puck under Crawford's glove from between the circles at 17:27 for his fifth postseason goal to give the Coyotes their first lead.

"We were better with the forecheck in the second period and did a better job of not letting them beat us with one pass," Yandle said. "That let us spend more time in their zone and when we turned the play we had some success."

The Blackhawks came hard on power play at the end of the period, but Smith stoned Toews on a rebound and gloved a Patrick Sharp bid to allow Phoenix to take a lead to the third period – one the Coyotes almost took it all the way to the final horn.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Dave Vest of edited this story and compiled this recap.

After winning a faceoff following an icing call, Coyotes center Martin Hanzal set up just in front of the crease and got just enough of Adrian Aucoin's right-point shot at 9:29 of overtime to lift the Coyotes to a series-opening win.

"I thought 'Okie' saw me and kind of shot for my stick and I tipped it in – it was kind of lucky," said Hanzal, who hadn't scored since Feb. 6 against Detroit. "During the intermission (before overtime), we said 'somebody's got to be the hero' and then you have that moment, you score that goal, and it was just a great feeling."

► Click here to see the KEY MOMENT.

• Right wing Radim Vrbata suffered an undisclosed injury on his second shift and played just 0:30. After the game, Head Coach Dave Tippett said his status was "day-to-day."

• Defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson, making his Stanley Cup Playoffs debut, played a game-high 31:14. He took three shots on goal and blocked three shots.

• The Coyotes killed all four of Chicago's power plays and has killed 29 in a row dating to the regular season.

• The Coyotes were credited with 48 hits. Center Martin Hanzal led the way with eight.

• The Coyotes won 33 of 58 faceoffs. Center Boyd Gordon led the way by winning 15 of 24 draws.

• The Coyotes scratched Paul Bissonnette, Kyle Chipchura, David Schlemko, Michael Stone and Chris Summers.

• The Coyotes' next game is Game 2 on Saturday vs. the Chicago Blackhawks at Arena. The puck drops at 7 p.m. (Arizona time). The game can be seen on NBC Sports Network and can be heard on XTRA Sports 910 (AM).
"The adrenaline was pumping and I was kind of stiff-legged in the first period. I wasn't playing the puck much and I was kind of stuck in my net. Obviously that (first) goal can't happen but it did and I got over it. I knew it wasn't going to be a 1-0 game."  "We wanted to go into overtime and try to push the pace. I thought we did a good job in the offensive zone, forced a couple icings and were able to capitalize on a faceoff." "I felt like (the physical play) went both ways. We do what we have to do and we drew some penalties. There are some things we can take out of this game, but we didn't get the win so we're not happy with that."
Smith Tippett
  • GAME 3:
• GAME 4:
• GAME 6:
  • GAME 1: PHX 3, CHI 2 (OT)
  • GAME 2:
• GAME 5:
• GAME 7: 

scoring summary
1st Period
Jonathan Toews (1) ASST: Patrick Kane (1), Johnny Oduya (1)
1 - 0 CHI
2nd Period
Taylor Pyatt (1) ASST: Daymond Langkow (1)
1 - 1 Tie
Antoine Vermette (1) ASST: Raffi Torres (1), Keith Yandle (1)
2 - 1 PHX
3rd Period
Brent Seabrook (1) ASST: Jonathan Toews (1), Patrick Kane (2)
2 - 2 Tie
1st OT Period
Martin Hanzal (1) ASST: Adrian Aucoin (1), Rostislav Klesla (1)
3 - 2 PHX
penalty summary
1st Period
Ray Whitney  Hooking against  Andrew Shaw
Martin Hanzal  Roughing against  Bryan Bickell
Bryan Bickell  Roughing against  Martin Hanzal
2nd Period
Dave Bolland  Hooking against  Antoine Vermette
Patrick Sharp  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
Antoine Vermette  Interference against  Dave Bolland
3rd Period
Oliver Ekman-Larsson  Tripping against  Patrick Kane
Keith Yandle  Hi-sticking against  Andrew Shaw
1st OT Period
goalie stats
Corey Crawford
Corey Crawford
SA: 34TOI: 68:26
Saves: 31EV: 28 - 31
PIM: 0PP: 3 - 3
SV%: .912SH: 0 - 0
Mike Smith
SA: 45TOI: 69:29
Saves: 43EV: 36 - 38
PIM: 0PP: 7 - 7
SV%: .956SH: 0 - 0 is the official Web site of the Arizona Coyotes. The Arizona Coyotes and are trademarks of IceArizona Hockey Co LP. NHL, NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL Logos and marks NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 2015 The Arizona Coyotes and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | AdChoices | Contact us | Site Map