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Final Look: Raanta Makes Season-High 45 Saves in St. Louis

Coyotes held to a season-low 14 shots, return to Arizona for three-game home stand

by Alex Kinkopf @AEKinkopf / Game Recap

RAANTA MAKES SEASON-HIGH 45 SAVES IN ST. LOUIS

There was no movement generated in the win column, but the Coyotes received arguably their best goaltending performance of the season in Thursday's 1-0 loss to the St. Louis Blues at Enterprise Center.

Antti Raanta put on a stellar showing as he made a season-high 45 saves.

Raanta has now stopped 109 of the last 112 shots he's faced over the course of his last three starts, improving his overall save percentage to .922, which ranks in the Top 10 among qualified goaltenders in the NHL.

"Unreal, he was great tonight," head coach Rick Tocchet said of Raanta. "He obviously gave us a chance, he was the star for us, and hopefully he can rest up."

The Coyotes have momentarily fallen out of the Western Conference playoff picture following back-to-back losses. The Winnipeg Jets have claimed a wild card spot following their 5-1 win over the Ottawa Senators.

"It doesn't feel great, especially today when Raants really gave us a chance to get a couple points here," said Niklas Hjalmarsson . "He was playing unbelievably for us, and Hillsy same thing yesterday, our goalies have been really good for us these last two games and we haven't been able to find a way to score goals, and at the same time, defend in the right moments, so two big tough losses for us."

The Blues connected for the game's lone goal with 8:00 left to play in the third period.

Arizona was held to a season-low 14 shots.

"We had no juice tonight, it just hit us, a lot of games, you could just tell a lot of guys were tired," Tocchet added. "We hung in there and obviously Raants was unreal tonight, he gave us a chance and that's basically the story. We had no juice and we just tried that 'bend don't break defense', we had a couple breakaways but we just couldn't get one."

The shutout loss was the Coyotes' fifth of the season.

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TRACKING IT

GAME #64: ARIZONA (0) at ST. LOUIS (1)

  • SOG: ARI - 14, STL - 46
  • PP: ARI - 0/3, STL - 0/3

ARIZONA SCORING:

  • No Scoring

ST. LOUIS SCORING:

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THEY SAID IT

"It's very tight and close in the standings, but we just have to focus on our own performance, get a little better here, find some more energy and try to have a big push here in the last bit of February and March."

Niklas Hjalmarsson, following Thursday's 1-0 loss to St. Louis

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DON'T OVERLOOK IT

THE SITUATION: Taylor Hall's late first period close-call breakaway

Niklas Hjalmarsson's tremdendous gap control led to a pokecheck and bank pass that sprung Taylor Hall up the ice alone on a breakaway with just over a minute left in the first period.

Reading Hjalmarsson's turnover and transition, Hall sped past St. Louis backcheckers and walked in for an attempt at Jordan Binnington's blocker side, which was denied in a desperation attempt by the Blues' netminder.

Nearly a goal, nearly a 1-0 lead.

Hall's scoring chance, you might say, was the best one the Coyotes had all night.

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GOTTA SEE IT

THE SITUATION: Antti Raanta's two-time sequence on Sammy Blais and Oskar Sundqvist

Just prior to the midway mark of the second period, Antti Raanta denied a Blues' one-two sequence to keep the game in a scoreless tie.

As St. Louis entered on an odd-man rush, Sammy Blais cut across the slot and fired a wrist shot that Raanta turned away with his right pad. On the doorstep was Oskar Sundqvist, whose follow-up attempt was denied by Raanta's blocker.

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PHOTO FINISH

See puck, save puck. Antti Raanta gets an up-close look at the puck after getting a pad on a long-distance shot just before snatching it out of mid-air as Jaden Schwartz pressured the crease, making one of his 45 saves in the Coyotes' 1-0 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Thursday night at Enterprise Center. (Photo Credit: Scott Rovak - NHLI via Getty Images)

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

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