After a strong performance on offense, the Coyotes look to win consecutive games for the first time this season when they host the struggling Kings in a Pacific Division matchup on Thursday.
A pregame meeting and Nolan's first goal in two years helped carry Phoenix (2-4-0) to a much-needed 5-2 win over the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday.
After losing four straight games - including the first three of a four-game trip - the Coyotes avoided their worst start to a season since moving to Phoenix 10 years ago.
"We had a good talk before the game and we all just looked at everyone and said let's get a fresh start, forget about the beginning of the season; let's start from now and take it forward," said Nolan, whose had one of three Phoenix third-period scores.
Nolan sat out last season with a knee injury following the yearlong lockout. He scored 19 of his 349 career goals in 2003-04, with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Nolan has 14 goals and 18 assists in 43 games against Los Angeles.
"Finally," said Nolan, who had not found the back of the net since a two-goal effort against Colorado on March 20, 2004. "It's a relief to finally get (a goal)."
Dave Scatchard and Shane Doan also scored for the Coyotes, whose scoring spree gave them as many goals as they had in their entire four-game losing streak.
Doan has 11 goals and 25 assists in 49 career games against the Kings.
The Coyotes, who entered Tuesday's game ranked 29th in the league in penalty killing, stopped all eight St. Louis power plays and scored their first short-handed goal of the season in the game's final moments.
Phoenix now takes on the Kings (2-4-1), who have scored just one goal in each of their last four games, going 0-3-1 in that stretch. They have not won since a 4-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Oct. 10.
Los Angeles lost 2-1 in overtime to the surging Minnesota Wild on Wednesday. Rookie Patrick Sullivan scored his first NHL goal in the first period to provide the only Los Angeles offense.
"He's going to be a goal-scorer in this league," said Kings coach Marc Crawford of Sullivan, who also has an assist this season. "Our growth is all in our young forwards."
Center Michael Cammalleri, who leads Los Angeles with three goals, was held without a point for the first time in four games. Cammalleri had two goals and an assist in his previous three games.
Defenseman Rob Blake, in his second stint with the Kings this season, has yet to notch a point in seven games.
There were some positives for the Kings in the defeat. They outshot the Wild 35-26 in regulation, and Minnesota, the NHL's top-rated power-play unit, finished 0-for-5 with the man advantage. Los Angeles opponents had gone 5-for-20 on the power play in the previous three games.
Phoenix won five of eight meetings against Los Angeles last season.
Coyotes goaltender Curtis Joseph is 22-9-5 with a 2.26 goals-against average in 38 career games versus the Kings.
|Apr 07 '07||PHX 2 at LAK 3||A. Kopitar|
|Apr 05 '07||LAK 2 at PHX 3||S. Doan|
|Jan 20 '07||PHX 3 at LAK 2||T. Roche|
|Dec 26 '06||PHX 3 at LAK 4 - SO||A. Kopitar|
|Nov 30 '06||LAK 4 at PHX 7||S. Doan|
|Nov 18 '06||PHX 3 at LAK 5||C. Conroy|
|Nov 04 '06||LAK 4 at PHX 6||E. Jovanovski|
|Oct 19 '06||LAK 4 at PHX 0||A. Frolov|