Photo Credit: Norm Hall
SATURDAY'S LINE UP
(LW) Mike Comrie - (C) Jeremy Roenick - (RW) Oleg Saprykin
(LW) Patrick Fischer - (C) Joel Perrault - (RW) Dave Scatchard
(LW) Enver Lisin - (C) Steven Reinprecht - (RW) Shane Doan
(LW) Josh Gratton - (C) Mike Zigomanis - (RW) Owen Nolan
Keith Ballard - Nick Boynton
Derek Morris - Ed Jovanovski
Keith Yandle - Dennis Seidenberg
(Bold indicates starting line-up)
On Saturday night, the Phoenix Coyotes posted a thrilling 2-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks on the strength of Joel Perrault's overtime goal.
The first period began with series of dump-in by both the Phoenix Coyotes and the Anaheim Ducks, but with neither club generating any serious scoring threats over the opening minutes of play.
At 2:41 of the first period, Coyotes defenseman Dennis Seidenberg was called for interference giving the Ducks their first man-advantage of the game. Just as has been the case for the entire pre-season, the Phoenix penalty-killing unit was ready for the challenge and they quickly killed off the penalty and returned to full strength.
Phoenix forward Joel Perrault would be the next to visit the penalty box when he was assessed a hooking call at 6:50 of the period. Once again, the Coyotes defense, led during by Derek Morris, kept the Anaheim attack in neutral and kept the Ducks off the scoreboard.
Oleg Saprykin brought the crowd to their feet when his shot mid-way through the first, struck the goal post and fell to the ice. Unfortunately, Anaheim netminder J.S. Giguere would cover the loose puck before the Coyotes could get to it, thereby keeping the game tied at 0-0.
Shortly after Saprykin's drive off the post, the Coyotes would find redemption as a loose puck inside the left face-off circle of the Anaheim zone, was rifled into the top corner of the net on a wrist shot by Dave Scatchard for the 1-0 lead. Patrick Fisher and Joel Perrault recorded assists on Scatchard's first period tally.
Both clubs would spend the remainder of the period trading penalties and power plays, but a lack of quality scoring chances prevented the score from changing as the first period came to a close with the Coyotes leading 1-0.
The Coyotes opened the second period with a pair of well-executed puck possession plays inside the Ducks zone. However, Anaheim's defensive duo of Scott Neidermayer and Chris Pronger, helped keep the pressure off Giguere and keep the Phoenix lead at 1-0.
The Ducks would even the score at 1-1 at 4:36 of the second, when Samuel Pahlsson's shot from the right face-off circle, found its way past goaltender Curtis Joseph and into the Phoenix net.
The Coyotes and Ducks traded penalties in the minutes following Pahlsson's goal, but the score remained tied at 1-1.
Phoenix forward Josh Gratton and Anaheim's Shawn Thornton took the spotlight at 8:05 of the stanza when the two dropped the gloves off following a face-off in the Ducks zone. The two traded right hands, landing nearly every punch thrown before they both fell to the ice and were separated by the officials. Gratton and Thornton would each receive five-minute majors for fighting following the play.
With just over two minutes to play in the period, the Coyotes almost caught a break when Giguere went behind the net to play the puck but couldn't establish the control and the puck bounced out to the front of the crease. But an Anaheim defenseman was in position and quickly moved the play away from the net.
With 1:01 to play in the period, Coyotes forward Mike Comrie was sent to the box for roughing. The Ducks would not be able to create enough pressure in the final minute of play to take the lead, but they would still have 59-seconds of power play time waiting for them to start the third period as the teams skated off the ice after 40-minutes of play tied at 1-1.
The Coyotes started the final period on the penalty kill as they finished the job they started late in the second period and saw Comrie return to the ice with the score still tied.
Phoenix would get their next power play opportunity at 1:17 of the first when Ryan Getzlaf of the Ducks was whistled for hooking. With the extra skater, the Coyotes began to flood the Anaheim net with shots for all corners of the zone. Phoenix rookie Enver Lisin had the most impressive scoring opportunity when he turned on the speed, captured a loose puck along the far boards and closed in on Giguere. Once again, the Ducks netminder was in position keeping his net clean and the score deadlocked at 1-1.
The Coyotes would have a golden opportunity at 9:27 of the frame when the Ducks, who already had Francois Beauchemin in the penalty box for delay-of-game, saw Ian Moran take a tripping penalty, giving Phoenix 1:23 of five-on-three hockey. The Coyotes continued to attack the Anaheim net, but despite their efforts, Giguere kept Phoenix from re-capturing the lead as both penalties expired and play resumed with five skaters aside.
With 7:03 to play in the contest, Coyotes center Mike Zigomanis was caught tripping Pronger deep in the Ducks zone, giving Anaheim a late power play. The situation would turn worse 42-seconds later when Ed Jovanovski (hooking) was sent to join Zigomanis in the box.
Chris Pronger nearly gave Anaheim their first lead of the night with 19-seconds remaining on the five-on-three power play when he hammered a slap shot from the top of the slot, but "Cujo" was playing deep in his net and was able to react quickly, keeping the puck in his sight and halting the Ducks drive. Coyotes captain Shane Doan did a great job of fore-checking late in the penalty to Jovanovski, allowing time on the penalty to expire and putting Phoenix back at full strength.
With 1:25 to play in the third, the Coyotes found themselves shorthanded once again when Comrie was called for hooking. The Ducks controlled the play in the Phoenix zone and Pronger came close to winning the game with eight seconds to play, but a glove save by Joseph kept the game tied and sent the teams into overtime.
In the extra frame, the Coyotes received another five-on-three power play and with eight-seconds remaining in the two-man advantage, Joel Perrault, blasted a one-timer from the right side that beat Giguere to give Phoenix a 2-1 win.