The Coyotes beat Minnesota, 2-1 in a shootout, on Monday night at Xcel Energy Center to earn their 24th win of the season in their 48th game.
It’s worth noting because with two dozen victories Arizona already has matched its win total for all of last season.
"That’s not hard to do,” Head Coach Dave Tippett said. “We’ve played better this year. Just look at the simple impact that our young players had on this game tonight between Louis (Domingue), (Tobias) Rieder, (Anthony) Duclair, Max (Domi). Our young players are helping grow this organization. There’s lots of learning to do yet but they’re competitive in every game, and they want to do well and they want to learn, so it’s a step in the right direction.”
Arizona has earned 53 points, three fewer than last season’s total.
• Duclair led the team with six shots on goal so it was only fitting that he be picked to take a shot in the shootout. He went second for Arizona, after Mikkel Boedker, whose forehand shot was blocked by Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk.
After watching Boedker’s shot unfold, Duclair opted to try something different.
“I don’t usually go on the backhand but I saw Boedker try to go low blocker and it didn’t work out,” Duclair said. “I just wanted to try and go backhand and luckily it went in.”
Duclair’s goal was the only goal scored in the shootout; Minnesota’s Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Charlie Coyle all failed to score.
• With Martin Hanzal in the penalty box for roughing, Antoine Vermette scored the game-tying goal at 18:47 of the third period. It was Arizona’s first short-handed goal of the season.
Rieder set up the goal with some hustle after Arizona won a face-off.
“We managed to get the puck first and some speed,” Vermette said. “Somehow (Rieder) created some confusion behind their net and made a great pass in front.”
Vermette took the pass from Rieder and rifled the puck into an empty net.
• Tippett praised Domingue for keeping the Coyotes in the game in the first 40 minutes when his teammates generated just six shots on goal.
“Louis was the only reason we hung around the game,” Tippett said. “He continues to play well.”
Domingue was especially effective in the second period when he stopped shots on two breakaways and made a nifty glove save on a shot by Jason Pominville at 11:39.
• The Coyotes believed defenseman Michael Stone scored the game-winning goal in overtime but the goal was immediately waved off and then reviewed.
Here’s the official ruling from the NHL:
“At 2:47 of overtime in the Coyotes/Wild game, the Situation Room initiated a review under the terms of a Coach’s Challenge to review the “Interference on the Goalkeeper” decision that resulted in a “no goal” call.
After reviewing all available replays and consulting with NHL Hockey Operations staff, the Referee determined that Arizona’s Mikkel Boedker interfered with Minnesota goaltender Devan Dubnyk before the puck crossed the goal line.
Therefore the original call stands – no goal Arizona Coyotes.”
• Defenseman Nicklas Grossmann missed a second consecutive game because of illness.
• Forward Christian Thomas, whom the Coyotes recalled from the American Hockey League on Sunday, reported to the team on Monday morning but did not play vs. the Wild.
"He's a new player to our organization and I wanted to get him in and just kind of get a feel for him," Tippett said. "He's played well down there but we haven't had much communication (about him) since we acquired him in a trade, so we just want to get him up for a couple days and see where he is at."