Coyotes Shut Out by Lightning at Home

The Tampa Bay Lightning won a 2-0 shutout over the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena Saturday night. Tampa Bay goalie Ben Bishop kept 31 shots out for his fifth shutout of the season.

Lightning left wing Ondrej Palat scored with 57 seconds left in the first period, getting a wrist shot from the wall past Louis Domingue. This was the game’s only goal until Nikita Kucherov scored an empty netter with 47 seconds remaining. Kucherov has 27 goals this season, leading the Lightning.

Arizona had two five-on-three opportunities in the second period but could not convert them into goals. Domingue made 32 saves in the losing effort. He wasn’t happy about letting the Palat goal in. “I just didn’t see it,” he said. “It’s too bad that it comes down to that.”

The Coyotes are 31-33-7, nine points out of a wild card spot. The Minnesota Wild, one of two teams Arizona needs to pass, won Saturday.

Arizona travels to San Jose Sunday to play at 8 p.m. MST, just three days after beating the Sharks 3-1 at home.

Coyotes Beat Sharks on Late Shane Doan Goal

The NHL’s best road team, the San Jose Sharks, came to Gila River Arena to play the Arizona Coyotes and left with a 3-1 loss Thursday night.

Mike Smith stopped 27 shots and allowed only one goal in his second game back from an absence of 40 games due to injury.

Coyotes defenseman Michael Stone opened the scoring in the first period with his fifth goal of the season. The game was still tied 1-1 in the final two minutes after two Sharks goals were disallowed — one on an offsides call during review and another because scorer Chris Tierney made a kicking motion.

Veteran Shane Doan netted the winner for Arizona with 1:31 remaining, beating Sharks goalie Martin Jones when he was almost parallel to goal. Antoine Vermette added an empty net goal to seal the win.

Doan said, “I don’t know how it went in. It went off a leg or something.”

With 12 games left in the season, the Coyotes (31-32-7) have 69 points, seven less than the Colorado Avalanche in the final wild card spot.

The Coyotes host the Tampa Bay Lighting Saturday at 8 p.m. MDT.

Coyotes Send Marek Langhamer Down to AHL

The Arizona Coyotes sent backup goalie Marek Langhamer back down to the American Hockey League team Springfield on Sunday.

The 21-year-old Czech has played 13 games for the Springfield Falcons this season, compiling a 6-6-1 record with a 3.52 GAA. He was promoted a week earlier but did not appear in a game. He was drafted in the 7th round by Arizona in 2012. When he was called up, RotoWire gave this assessment of his numbers: “He’s clearly not ready for anything more than a cup of coffee.”

Langhamer became expendable when starting goalie Mike Smith returned Saturday following a 40-game absence and played well in a 4-0 shutout of the Edmonton Oilers. Louis Domingue serves as his backup.

Coyotes Shut Out Oilers in Mike Smith’s Return

The Arizona Coyotes defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-0 Saturday night for their second road win in a row, backed by the solid work of goalie Mike Smith in his return from injury after 40 games. Smith made 44 saves to earn the 29th shutout of his nine-year career.

The game was scoreless through 13 minutes when Viktor Tikhonov deflected a Martin Hanzal puck past Edmonton goalie Cam Talbot. Antoine Vermette scored two goals and Alex Tanguay another. Vermette has four goals and five assists in the last week.

Oilers coach Todd McLellan said, “The smarter team won the game, hands down. We had 44 shots on net, but other than Taylor [Hall’s] breakaway, I don’t recall having one single outnumbered rush. On the other end, we gave up five or six clear-cut 2-on-1s.”

The Coyotes have four days off before returning to Gila River Arena to play the San Jose Sharks Thursday at 8 p.m. MDT. Arizona has lost both meetings this year, a 4-1 road defeat in February and a 3-1 home loss a month earlier.

Coyotes End 10-Game Winless Road Streak

The Arizona Coyotes defeated the Calgary Flames 4-1 on Friday night, snapping a 10-game road streak of winless games. The game was tied at 1 early in the third period when veteran Coyotes center Antoine Vermette scored on a power play.

Another veteran, Brad Richardson, put a Shane Doan rebound past Flames goalie Joni Ortio with under six minutes remaining. Richardson then scored an empty-netter in the waning minutes to clinch the much-needed victory.

Young Coyotes goalie Louis Domingue was impressive with 24 saves and a 0.96 save percentage. Doan’s two assists put him at 41 points for the year, his 14th season with at least 40. He needs seven more assists to become the team’s all-time leader in that category.

Defenseman Dennis Wideman made his return after an arbitrator on Friday cut his 20-game suspension in half for injuring linesman Don Henderson. Wideman, who missed 19 games, says he wasn’t trying to hurt the ref. He expressed a hope for Henderson’s full recovery and said, “I still maintain that it was completely accidental and I had no intent on hitting Donnie at all.”

The Coyotes travel to Edmonton tonight to play the Oilers in an 8 p.m. MST start.

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