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game recap

Flames hang on for win against Coyotes, gain in Pacific

Tkachuk has three assists for Calgary, which moves within one point of second place

by Aaron Vickers / Independent Correspondent

Gaudreau buries PPG for equalizer

ARI@CGY: Gaudreau puts home PPG from the slot

Johnny Gaudreau rips a wrist shot from the slot that beats Darcy Kuemper on the power play to tie the game at 1 in the 1st period

  • 00:38 •

CALGARY -- The Calgary Flames gained in the Pacific Division race when they hung on for a 3-2 win against the Arizona Coyotes at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.

Johnny Gaudreau scored, and Matthew Tkachuk had three assists for the Flames (36-26-7), who have won three games in a row and five of the past seven (5-1-1). Cam Talbot made 32 saves.

Calgary trails the Edmonton Oilers by one point for second in the division and is three behind the first-place Vegas Golden Knights, who lost 4-0 to the Winnipeg Jets.

"Every game right now has to be a playoff-type atmosphere," Talbot said. "All these games, they're going to make or break our season right now. To be able to close these gaps and push the other teams further down behind us is obviously huge."


[WATCH: All Coyotes vs. Flames highlights]


Taylor Hall had a goal and an assist for the Coyotes (33-28-8), who lost for the first time in three games. Darcy Kuemper made 31 saves.

Arizona trails the Flames by five points in the Pacific and is two points behind the Vancouver Canucks and Winnipeg Jets for the two wild cards into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference.

"You can't go on skids," Hall said. "That's the biggest thing is, you lose one, you have to get back on the horse and find a way to get a point or two in the next game, especially when you're on the road. We know the focus that we have to have. We're comfortable here. We're in games. If we can find a way to get on a streak, more than two games in a row, we're going to be set."

Video: ARI@CGY: Hall wires home wrist shot from the circle

Hall gave the Coyotes a 1-0 lead at 1:11 of the first period on the first shot of the game, but Gaudreau tied it 1-1 at 5:54 with a wrist shot from the slot on the power play.

"They didn't have a lead for too, too long," Gaudreau said. "We battled back. The power play was huge tonight. It tied the game up and kind of took off from there."

TJ Brodie scored 41 seconds later with a shot from the point to put Calgary ahead 2-1 at 6:35. He has scored in three straight games after he had one goal in his first 60 games of the season.

Mikael Backlund made it 3-1 at 4:17 of the second with a shot from the high slot. His goal came after Arizona forward Conor Garland hit the post from inside the crease at 2:14.

Video: ARI@CGY: Backlund buries wrist shot in the high slot

Carl Soderberg cut it to 3-2 at 10:57 of the second when he scored on a rebound behind Talbot following a failed Backlund clear.

"We were playing the right way, I felt like, in the second, most of the second," Coyotes captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson said. "That's how we got back in the game. The first, when we came out, we looked a little bit slow and didn't play the right way, and that's where we get behind."

Nick Schmaltz nearly tied the game with 3:28 remaining when he slid the puck between Talbot's legs, but the shot went wide of the left goal post.


They said it

"We allowed them to play a rush game, and I think that's where they're probably most comfortable. We didn't do a good enough job pressuring their D, making it hard on them. It seemed like they had lots of room to make passes up to forwards all night long. From there, they made plays off the rush. You see the creativity that some of these guys have. That's what really bit us and didn't allow us to really come back in the third." -- Coyotes forward Taylor Hall

"Anytime you get down quick off the bat like that it was never how you drew it up, but give credit to our guys. There's no quit in us. We go out there and battle hard. The power play got us a big one, and [TJ Brodie] makes a great shot through a bunch of guys. We knew they were going to come with a big push in the second, and they did. We were able to weather the storm there and came out and really locked it down in the third." -- Flames goalie Cam Talbot


Need to know

Gaudreau has two goals and three assists during a four-game point streak. ... It was Tkachuk's 15th multipoint game in the NHL. Among players selected in the 2016 NHL Draft, only Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs (22) and Patrik Laine of the Jets (17) have more. ... Hall has 30 points (11 goals, 19 assists) in 31 games against the Flames. ... It was Talbot's 300th NHL start.


What's next

Coyotes: At the Winnipeg Jets on Monday (8 p.m. ET; TSN3, FS-A, FS-A PLUS, NHL.TV)

Flames: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN+, SN, ATTSN-RM, NHL.TV)

Video: Gaudreau, Backlund lead Flames to victory

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