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Final Look: Coyotes Top Kings, Post Second-Straight Shutout

Antti Raanta pitches a 31-save shutout as the Coyotes improve to 4-1-1 against Pacific opponents in Monday's 3-0 win

by Alex Kinkopf @AEKinkopf / Game Recap

COYOTES TOP KINGS, POST SECOND-STRAIGHT SHUTOUT

Back to their defensive roots and driven by continued intentions to establish an assertive home identity, the Coyotes earned their second-straight shutout win on Monday night, blanking the Los Angeles Kings en route to a 3-0 victory at Gila River Arena.

The Coyotes have not allowed a goal in 127:49 of play.

Antti Raanta stopped all 31 shots he faced to earn his first shutout of the season, the 12th of his NHL career, and his fourth with the Coyotes.

Monday's game marked the first time the Coyotes have posted consecutive shutouts since March 29, 31, and April 3 of 2012. It is just the sixth occurence of back-to-back shutouts in franchise history.

Early offensive support was provided in the form of two first period goals, the first coming just over three minutes into the game when Christian Dvorak found Conor Garland with a pass from in tight as he fell to the ice after winning an impressive battle for possession in Los Angeles' slot.

Garland's goal, his team-leading 10th of the season, gave the Coyotes a 1-0 lead with 16:48 remaining in the first.

With just over five minutes left to play in the opening frame, the Coyotes' power play snapped back into action. Following a decorated sequence which saw all five players touch the puck in a 15-20 second window, Dvorak found Derek Stepan on the back-door to register his second primary assist of the night.

Stepan's goal, his fourth of the year, upped the Coyotes' lead to 2-0 heading into the first intermission.

Jakob Chychrun added the Coyotes' third and final goal just past the game's midway point, upping Arizona's lead to 3-0 with 9:13 to play in the second. After receiving a cross-ice feed from Garland in the high slot, Chychrun connected with a shot low to the blocker side to deposit his fifth goal of the year.

Chychrun's marker was the Coyotes' second of the night on the power play; Monday marked the third game of the year in which Arizona scored multiple goals on the man advantage in a single game.

Arizona is now 8-0-0 when scoring a power play goal.

Dvorak (2A), Schmaltz (2A), and Garland (1G, 1A) each finished the night with multiple points.

With the win, the Coyotes improved to 13-7-2, one point behind the Edmonton Oilers for first place in the Pacific Division. They are 4-1-1 against division opponents this season, and are now one of only four teams (EDM, NYI, WAS) in the NHL with 13-plus wins.

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TRACKING IT

GAME #22: ARIZONA (3) vs. LOS ANGELES (0)

  • SOG: ARI - 27, LAK - 31
  • PP: ARI - 2/4, LAK - 0/4

ARIZONA SCORING:

LOS ANGELES SCORING:

  • No Scoring

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THEY SAID IT

"They're big points, right? When you play at home, you want teams to know that if they're going to score, they're really going to have to score, they have to go to the areas. I think we've been really defending well. Guys pride themselves on it, sacrificing themselves. Not trying to get that fourth goal, but just trying to lock it down."

Rick Tocchet, on further establishing a 'home identity' during Monday's 3-0 win.

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DON'T OVERLOOK IT

THE SITUATION: Antti Raanta's two breakaway saves.

Calm and collected, Antti Raanta kept the Kings off the board with two big-time breakaway saves.

Less than a minute into the second period, Raanta denied Adrian Kempe with his toe as he stuck out his left pad while the Kings' forward attempted to sneak a backhand shot with a move against the grain.

With just over 10 minutes to play in the third, Raanta stayed true to Austin Wagner as he kept center to the Los Angeles shooter, nixing the one-on-one look with a quick glove save.

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GOTTA SEE IT

THE SITUATION: Tie game, 0-0, with 16:48 to play in the first period.

Front-net position, strength to retrieve, a quick stick to handle, and intuition to find the shooter.

There have been a few standout solo efforts that have led to goals so far this season, but Christian Dvorak's play early in the first period to set up Conor Garland's game-opening tally may be the new headliner.

Dvorak boxed out the Kings' towering Kurtis Macdermid, who stands at 6'5", 233 lbs., to win a battle for a puck that came via Nick Schmaltz , and tucked a pass to Garland as he fell to the ice while off-balance.

"Christian lifts that guy's stick, which is such a high hockey IQ play and sends it right on my tape," Garland said. "I'm going to the net there expecting a shot for a rebound and he lays it right there for me, what a play."

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PHOTO FINISH

A stark contrast of emotion. A dejected Jack Campbell skates away from his net while Oliver Ekman-Larsson glides in to join the celebration of Derek Stepan's first period power play goal, which gave the Coyotes a 2-0 lead in the team's eventual 3-0 win over the Los Angeles Kings Monday night at Gila River Arena. (Photo Credit: Norm Hall / Getty Images)

Lead Photo Credit: Norm Hall - Getty Images // GIF Highlight Footage: Fox Sports Arizona

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