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Colorado @ Coyotes Postgame: Stopping the Avalanche

[Box Score] - [Game Page]- [Colorado's Reaction]

[Shift Charts] - [Head-to-Head TOI] - [Corsi and Fenwick] - [5-on-5 Faceoffs]

The Kids Day Matinee featured the Phoenix Coyotes with a fell fought victory over the Colorado Avalanche. The Coyotes didn’t leave anything in the tank for the kids, they had one of their highest scoring games this season, including a goal on the power play, excellent goaltending from Mike Smith who only let 1 in on 39 shots, a fight between Kyle Chipchura and Cody McLeod, and Boyd Gordon got his 100th career point. There isn’t much more you could ask for at a hockey game.

Gilbert Brule scored first on the power play in the first period with his first goal of the season and as Coyote. Colorado’s Chuck Kobasew managed to tie it up less than 3 minutes later but after that it was all Coyotes with Shane Doan scoring in the first and the second, Boyd Gordon scoring in the second and the third, and Rostislav Klesla scoring in the third with the final score 6-1 Coyotes.

Defense was pretty good during the game as well. The Yotes definitely had to weather a few storms in their own zone but they prevented the Avalanche from getting past their first goal. Defense was also good at helping to get the points with Chris Summers and Derek Morris getting one assist each, Keith Yandle getting two assists along, and of course Klesla getting a goal. Its good to see the defense helping generate those points while keeping the other team from racking up points of their own.

It was good seeing goals from players that don’t usually score, players like Gordon, Brule, and Klesla, it really takes the pressure off of Smith in net. It really says something about the offense when the goalie, who made some amazing saves to keep them in the lead, was the Coyotes third star of the evening. This was the kind of play that had been lacking the past month and a half, and with two points the Coyotes move a little bit closer to a play-off spot, and if they continue to play like they did during this game I can see them winning a lot more.

(more to come)

Five For Winning

1. Play to the buzzer. The Coyotes have too often taken off the last couple minutes of periods and it has cost them points this season. Spending the last two minutes of periods running around your own D zone isn't the way to win hockey games. The Coyotes kept the Avalanche from scoring in the last few minutes, they even got a goal with a minute and a half left in the first and drew a penalty in in the last two minutes of the second. Done

2. Score three or more goals. Colorado has enough firepower that two goals isn't likely to get the Dogs a win today. 6-1. Enough said.

3. Shane Doan on the scoresheet. The captain had zero points on the Yotes three game road trip. The good news is he looked pretty good the last time the Desert Dogs played on home ice. Doaner scored twice. Done.

4. The Power Play. The Coyotes haven't scored a power play goal in almost two weeks. The Coyotes are not only dead last in the league in terms of power play percentage, but they are also dead last in power play opportunities. They at least need to draw penalties more penalties than the Avs do this afternoon. The Yotes drew 3 penalties and scored on the first power play. Done.

5. Score first. The Coyotes are 0-11-0 when trailing after the first period. Gilbert Brule scoring first on a power play. Done.

Our 3 Stars:

1. Boyd Gordon. It was great to see him come back from the IR list, and with two goals this was definitely one his better nights, and its great to see him get his 100th career point.

2. Mike Smith. Smitty made some great saves that kept the Avalanche from getting back into the game. With the way that he has been playing its great that he finally gets the win.

3. Gilbert Brule. Brule was picked up off waivers from the Edmonton Oilers, and this was only his third game with the Coyotes. Its great to see some new energy on the power play and he set up Klesla perfectly for the final goal.

Comment of the Night:

Why do we have to play hockey the hard way

lets make this easy and win and score 3 times in the first period

by GalenYote on Jan 16, 2012 12:44 PM PST

Looking Forward:

After games like this I wonder how things happen like Friday's loss to the Blue Jackets. The next game is going to be against the Ducks, who despite their position in the standings have been playing better since acquiring their new coach. Hopefully this is the start of a winning streak that moves the Yotes up in the standings.