Phoenix Coyotes Preseason Countdown: 40 Days

Jonathan Daniel

After all the hubbub surrounding ownership, we resume our countdown to the preseason.

40 might not ring any immediate bells for Coyotes fans, but I'm sure 4-0 does. 4-0 was the final score in Game 6 of the 2012 Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Chicago Blackhawks, and it marked the first time in the Coyotes' history that the team would win a playoff series. The game was highly symbolic of the way the Coyotes have played under Dave Tippett.

The Coyotes got outplayed significantly in the first two periods of this game. After 40 minutes, the shots were 28-8 in favor of the Blackhawks. But Mike Smith played absolutely unreal hockey down the stretch, and this game was no exception. Despite the merciless forechecking and offensive zone time that Chicago had, the only goal scored in those two periods was a power play goal by Oliver Ekman-Larsson.

For once the Coyotes decided to not make things interesting in the third period. Gilbert Brule scored less than three minutes into the third, and Antoine Vermette and Kyle Chipchura got their own tallies within two minutes of each other down the stretch to put Chicago away for good.

At last the weight was off Shane Doan's shoulders. Phoenix won the series 4-2, and would end up beating Nashville 4-1 in the semifinals before losing 4-1 to the eventual Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings. But this game is memorable for finally giving long suffering Coyotes fans a big reason to celebrate.

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