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Final Look: Coyotes Can't Overcome Early Deficit in Edmonton

Arizona transitions into its bye week with a 26-20-5 record and 57 standings points

by Alex Kinkopf @AEKinkopf / Game Recap

COYOTES CAN'T OVERCOME EARLY DEFICIT IN EDMONTON

After facing the adversity of a rather stocky first period deficit, the Coyotes struggled to climb even in Saturday afternoon's 7-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place.

With a 26-20-5 record and in the thick of the Pacific Division playoff race, the Coyotes now transition into the bye week and All-Star break; they will not play again until January 29.

"We thought we did a good job to put ourselves in a good spot here before the break, so now it's time to rest up a little bit before we get back," captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson said. "It's going to take a lot of hard work the last 31 games and we know that. We're in a good spot still, we just need to keep winning hockey games and keep getting better, and that's what we'll focus on when we get back."

The Coyotes fell into a rather deep hole on Saturday as the Oilers developed a commanding 5-0 lead with three goals in the first period with an additional two early in the second.

Taylor Hall buried his 13th goal of the season and his seventh in a Coyotes uniform with 14:40 remaining in the second period, connecting on a shot below the left face-off dot via a feed from Conor Garland , cutting the Oilers' lead to 5-1.

Minutes later, Christian Dvorak got the Coyotes back to within three when he put the finishing touches on a decorated power play sequence, jamming home a loose puck courtesy strong net-front presence to make the score 5-2 with 10:47 left to play in the middle frame.

The Oilers countered to take a 6-2 lead late in the second.

Antti Raanta , making his first start since January 10 after missing the last three games due to a lower-body injury, was pulled following the second period; he stopped 12 of the 18 shots he faced.

Ekman-Larsson deposited a snap shot from the left side with 8:48 left on the clock to get the Coyotes back to within three, 6-3, netting Arizona's second power play goal of the game.

Edmonton buried into an empty net with 3:46 remaining to take a 7-3 lead, the contest's final score.

Adin Hill stopped all eight of the shots he faced in relief of Raanta.

Both Hall (1G) and Dvorak (1G) extended their point streaks to four games in the loss.

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TRACKING IT

GAME #51: ARIZONA (3) at EDMONTON (7)

  • SOG: ARI - 30, EDM - 27
  • PP: ARI - 2/4, EDM - 1/4

ARIZONA SCORING:

EDMONTON SCORING:

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THEY SAID IT

"I thought we came out slow in the beginning, had a couple of bad goals. When we don't feel 100% or we don't have our legs we need to find ways to stick around in games and get points out of it, so it's a tough one."

Oliver Ekman-Larsson , on Saturday's 7-3 loss to Edmonton

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DON'T OVERLOOK IT

THE SITUATION: Christian Dvorak's second period power play goal

Consistency has laced Christian Dvorak's game this season.

With his second period front-net power play tally, Dvorak extended his point streak to four games.

This was no solo effort. Magnificent puck movement involving Taylor Hall, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Phil Kessel , and Conor Garland resulted in the loose puck Dvorak shoveled home, though his solid positioning atop the Oilers' crease allowed for the quick jam past Mike Smith.

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GOTTA SEE IT

THE SITUATION: Conor Garland and Taylor Hall get Arizona on the board

The chemistry between Conor Garland and Taylor Hall has been well documented over the last month.

The two teamed-up yet again to produce the Coyotes' first goal of the day on Saturday. Hall respected and supported Garland's space as the slinky forward cut and curled low in the corner. As he did that, Hall found his own pocket, which allowed for Garland's dish to set-up his one-timer from just below the left face-off dot.

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PHOTO FINISH

Hands in the air. Taylor Hall signals celebration after scoring in the second period on Saturday afternoon, getting the Coyotes on the board in the team's eventual 7-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place. (Photo Credit: Curtis Comeau - Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Lead Photo Credit: Andy Devlin - NHLI via Getty Images // GIF Highlight Footage: Fox Sports Arizona

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