Photo Credit: Norm Hall
COYOTES STARTING LINE-UP
(LW) Daniel Carcillo - (C) Mike Zigomanis - (RW) Owen Nolan
(D) Zbynek Michalek - (D) Matt Jones
KINGS STARTING LINE-UP
(LW) Scott Thornton - (C) Brian Willsie - (RW) Tom Kostopoulos
(D) Jamie Howard - (D) Jaroslav Modry
Phoenix - Curtis Joseph
Los Angeles - Sean Burke
On Thursday night, Phoenix forward Jeremy Roenick recorded a goal and an assist and goaltender Curtis Joseph turned in a 19-save performance as the Coyotes posted a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings.
The Coyotes and Kings wasted little time making their way to the penalty box in the opening period of play as Phoenix forward Fredrik Sjostrom and Los Angeles defenseman Jack Johnson visited the box just 56-seconds in for roughing.
Then at 1:21 of the first, the Kings took the first power play of the game when Coyotes' captain Shane Doan was forced into taking a hooking penalty on Los Angeles' Anze Kopitar to prevent a clean breakaway. However, the Phoenix penalty-killing unit was able to control the attack of the Kings' power play and return to full strength with the game still tied at 0-0.
With 8:31 gone in the period, the Coyotes received their first power play of the night when Joe Piskula was called for interference. The man-advantage was just what Phoenix needed to get the scoring started as they worked the puck around the Los Angeles zone; before defenseman Derek Morris blasted a slap shot from the point the caught the stick of Jeremy Roenick in front of the net and deflected past netminder Sean Burke for a 1-0 lead. Forward Niko Kapanen recorded his 16th assist of the year on Roenick's goal.
Midway through the first, Nick Boynton took his penalty of the game when he was called for interference. But just as they had done on the earlier penalty kill, the Coyotes refused to let the Kings gain any momentum or success with the extra attacker and the penalty was quickly killed and five-on-five play resumed.
With just under five minutes to play in the first, the Kings made another trip to the box when rookie Jack Johnson was whistled for hooking. Once again, the penalty would end up haunting Los Angeles as Phoenix's Bill Thomas hammered a slap shot from the slot that beat Burke high to the glove side for his seventh tally of the year. Center Steven Reinprecht recorded the lone assist on Thomas' goal.
The final minutes of the period would slide off the clock without incident and the Coyotes headed to the locker room after 20-minutes of play, holding a 2-0 lead.
Through the first eight minutes of the second, the clubs traded offensive rushes with the Kings producing a number of quality scoring chances. Fortunately, goaltender Curtis Joseph was preserving the two-goal lead with a series of great saves from close range.
With just over six minutes to play in the period, the Coyotes nearly recorded their third goal of the night when Niko Kapanen raced in from the left side and snapped a shot that beat Burke, but trickled just wide of the Los Angeles net.
At 17:23 of the second, the Kings climbed back into the game when they cut the Coyotes lead in half on a shot by Tom Kostopoulos the beat Joseph for his seventh goal of the year.
The Coyotes would waste little time in regaining the two goal advantage as Jeremy Roenick made perfect pass to a streaking Shane Doan in the slot, where Doan snapped a wrister over the blocker of Burke for a 3-1 Phoenix lead. Defenseman Derek Morris recorded his second assist of the night on Doan's team-leading 27th goal of the season and the Coyotes headed into the second intermission, still leading by two.
With 11:40 to play in the third period, the Coyotes penalty kill was called back into action when center Kevyn Adams was sent to the box for hooking. Los Angeles would make the most of the man-advantage as they crashed the Phoenix net, eventually allowing Mike Cammalleri to grab a loose puck and flip it into the net for his 33rd goal of the year.
Much of the remainder of the period featured the Coyotes controlling the tempo of play and forcing Sean Burke to make a number of saves to prevent Phoenix from adding to their lead and pulling away.
In the final minute of play, the Kings pulled Burke from the net in favor of an extra attacker, but just as he had done all night, Joseph controlled the action around his net and made the key stops when he needed to, leading the Coyotes to a 3-2 win over Los Angeles.