Alas, you can't win every game...the Coyotes learn this early in the season after dropping the second game of the home-and-home series (while all away in Prague) 3-0 to the Bruins. Nothing every really got going for the Coyotes and Boston was able to take advantage of some defensive lapses, make one pretty play and pretty much shore up their defensive zone.
Tim Thomas, the Vezina winner 2 years ago who has since lost the starting job in Boston, looked like the Vezina winner making some nice saves throughout the game, but most of the pressure was taken off of him by a collapsing defense that never let the play develop down low. The Coyotes best 2 opportunities came late in the third when Eric Belanger missed a wide open net on a shorthanded rush from a beautiful feed by Keith Yandle. As time wound down in the game, Lee Stempniak rang one off the post to preserve the shutout for Thomas.
After the jump, a bit more recappiness, our three stars of the game and the comment of the night (early morning).Throughout the game, the Coyotes looked a bit of a mess. No real sustained pressure in the offensive zone, no puck control nor smooth breakouts coming up center ice. Ilya Bryzgalov continued his fine play (albeit while giving up a lot of rebounds) and was keeping the Coyotes in this one for the first half of the game.
However, as is wont to happen, a costly turnover allowed Milan Lucic to put the Bruins on top 1-0, and later in the period, some strong work by Mark Recchi got the puck to Nathan Horton who scored his 3rd goal in the first two games to give Boston the 2-0 advantage. Oliver Ekman-Larrson is gonna be a star in this league, but was directly responsible for the first goal with an errant pass, and then was also a part of the group unable to control the play that led to the second goal. It's ok, kid...there'll be days like this.
The third goal was actually a pretty nifty play from Tyler Seguin off a lob pass by Michael Ryder. The Coyotes had been controlling play and Ryder lifted the puck to a streaking Seguin who got behind both David Schlemko and Yandle for the breakaway and tucked the puck behind Bryz.
Offensively, the Coyotes couldn't sustain pressure, but a few players did stand out to me as Scottie Upshall continued driving the net and had some good shots, Vernon Fiddler was keeping pressure down low and cycling well with Taylor Pyatt and Lee Stempniak and Keith Yandle was all over the ice.
As far as I'm concerned the maturation of Keith Yandle over the last 3 seasons has just been tremendous...I'm not sure he'll ever win a Norris, but he has to be getting into the discussion as one of the best all-around defensemen in the league. Ed Jovanovski ended the night by getting into a little hug-fest with Lucic which is only noteworthy because it allowed my fantasy team to win PIMs for the week with Lucic grabbing 4 minutes from the skirmish...good job Jovo!
The special teams didn't getting a ton of ice time as the Coyotes cut back on their penalties and didn't really draw too many power plays (just one for the entire game), but the PK continued to be very effective.
Our three stars of the game:
1 - David Krejci - had two assists and was a big part of the pressure from the Bruins all night.
2 - Tim Thomas - a few good saves that frustrated the Coyotes when they finally did get pressure.
3 - Tyler Seguin - first career NHL goal and it was a pretty one.
Comment of the night (I plan to make this a regular feature, so make sure you are commenting during the gameday threads - 290 yesterday isn't shabby, but there's plenty of room for improvement):
he IS the brute squad!
-ChadInGlendale [in reference to Zdeno Chara sneaking]
Video highlights courtesy of NHL.com should be available later today and I'll edit at some point....and here they are much later than intended:
Coyotes have almost a week off until the Red Wings come to Jobing.com Arena on October 16. It's the homeopener and there is absolutely no excuse for the Coyotes fans to be in attendance in force. Let's make sure we show the City of Glendale and the rest of the country how serious we are about the Coyotes!!