GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) -In a season filled with challenges, the Nashville Predators overcame their latest bout of adversity.
Losing a three-goal lead, the Predators bounced back with contributions from several lines, and responded to a push from the Phoenix Coyotes.
J.P. Dumont and Rich Peverley scored 23 seconds apart in the third period to lift the Predators to a 6-3 win over Phoenix on Sunday night.
Dumont snapped a 3-all tie when he sent a slap shot past Mikael Tellqvist at 5:36 of the final period. Dumont also had two assists for his second three-point game of the season.
Peverley scored his second of the year when he converted a pass from Radek Bonk at 5:59. Martin Gelinas added an empty-net goal at 19:20 of the third period.
"We were able to respond in the third period and come up with a big win," goalie Dan Ellis said. "Did I get rattled? No, I mean their goals were kind of hitting bodies and it's just unfortunate. You're going to get those goals during the course of the season."
Nashville's win spoiled an energetic Phoenix comeback after the Coyotes fell behind 3-0 midway through the opening period.
As has been the trend in recent games, things did not start well for Phoenix. The Coyotes allowed three goals on the Predators first eight shots.
The loss left the Coyotes with an 11-13-2 mark on home ice.
"We are just not the same team in this arena," coach Wayne Gretzky said. "We don't have the confidence as we do on the road. We are not winning hockey games when we need to be winning."
|Predators goalie Dan Ellis makes a save on a breakaway by Coyotes defenseman Keith Yandle, center, who was hooked by defenseman Ville Koistinen, left, in the third period on Sunday. Yandle was awarded a penalty shot, which Ellis saved, as Nashville won, 6-3. (AP Photo/Paul Connors)
Bonk put Nashville on the board at 4:34 of the opening period when he put the rebound of his initial shot that hit the left post into an open net. It was Bonk's first goal since Dec. 19 at Chicago.
The Predators increased their lead to 2-0 when David Legwand converted a pass from Dumont for his 13th goal of the season at 11:27. Nashville captain Jason Arnott knocked in his own rebound exactly 2 minutes later for a 3-0 lead.
At that point, and with 6:33 remaining in the first period, Gretzky pulled Ilya Bryzgalov in favor of backup Tellqvist.
"We need Bryzgalov to be better," Gretzky added. "He's taken on the responsibility as number one, and now he has to prove it. He's got to be way better."
Phoenix edged back when captain Shane Doan scored a power-play goal at 18:27 of the first period.
Daniel Winnik brought Phoenix within one when he scored at 7:40 of the second. Winnik made a move just outside the crease and managed to slide the puck between the goalie Ellis and the right post for his seventh of the season.
Phoenix tied it at 15:21 of the second when Ellis could not handle Ed Jovanovski's wrist shot from the blue line.
Then, Nashville responded with a third-period surge.
"We have to play with that same sense of urgency at home as on the road," Doan said. "Our play at home is unacceptable."
Nashville responded from a 4-3 defeat Saturday night in San Jose and nearly left Phoenix with consecutive losses.
"We did not have a great game in San Jose and everyone knew that," said Arnott. "We had to battle back against Phoenix and the team pulled together. We had good contributions from everybody and never let down."
Notes: Phoenix has allowed the first goal of the game in six of their past seven contests. Doan's goal was his fifth power-play goal of the season, one behind team leaders Radim Vrbata and Peter Mueller. .. Arnott's goal moved the 14-year NHL veteran within four points of 750 Ellis stopped defenseman Keith Yandle on a penalty shot with 7:05 left in the third period.