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Phoenix Coyotes @ Colorado Avalanche Recap: Règlement Victoire

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Antoine Vermette had a night to remember in Denver as the Phoenix Coyotes defeated the Colorado Avalanche 3-1.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Antoine Vermette was given an "A" on his sweater with captain Shane Doan out with an illness. He gave an A+ performance in his 700th NHL game.

Vermette's two goals and Thomas Greiss' 29 saves were the difference in Phoenix's 3-1 victory over the Colorado Avalanche. Jordan Szwarz would score the other goal for the Coyotes.

The first period looked like quintessential Coyotes hockey; Phoenix chased the puck quite a bit but thanks to some stellar goaltending by Greiss and some timely blocked shots, the Coyotes escaped the period without any damage done. The first period also featured no penalties; both teams only took two penalties in the entire contest.

Luckily for Phoenix, the Coyotes were the only one that converted on the man advantage. A sweet give and go play between Vermette and Yandle made the score 1-0 at 8:31 in the first period. The Coyotes would score the next goal in the game too as the fourth line of Jordan Szwarz, Paul Bissonnette, and Jeff Halpern took a three-on-two down the ice. Szwarz would pocket the rebound off of Avs goaltender Semyon Varlamov to make the game 2-0.

Colorado would get on the board at 14:28 of the second period thanks to a fortuitous bounce off of Greiss' left pad. Michael Stone and Patrick Bordeleau's sticks both met at the same time, bouncing the puck off of Greiss and into the net. Phoenix would respond just a minute later as Vermette put home a big rebound for his second on the night.

The third period followed the script of the first. Colorado mounted some strong offensive pressure in the latter stages of the third but Greiss was an absolute wall. Phoenix improves to 17-8-5 on the season with the regulation win.

Paw Prints

  • Vermette played in his 700th career NHL game, and it was certainly one to remember.
  • Mike Smith was unable to go with flu-like symptoms. He served as the team's backup but never left the Coyotes' dressing room.
  • Mike Ribeiro appeared to sustain a shoulder injury in the second period on a hard, but clean hit by Patrick Bordeleau. He would not miss any time and recorded the secondary assist on the opening goal of the night.
  • Bissonnette recorded his fifth assist on the season with a helper on Szwarz's goal. He is one assist shy of his career high, which he achieved in last year's shortened season.
  • Tim Kennedy may have played his best game as a Coyote. He had several terrific scoring chances in front of Varlamov and was all over the ice in his 15:16 TOI.
  • Phoenix won the faceoff battle 27-19. Martin Hanzal, Antoine Vermette, and Jeff Halpern all won more draws than they lost.

Three Stars of the Game

  • 3rd Star - Mikkel Boedker. Boeds assisted on the third goal of the night, and his line was a force in tonight's game.
  • 2nd Star - Thomas Greiss. The backup netminder delivered a quintessential performance in the clutch with 29 saves, including an absolutely beautiful glove save in the dying minutes of the third period.
  • 1st Star- Antoine Vermette. The Saint-Agapit, Quebec native had two huge goals, won 63% of his faceoffs, and led the team in shots on the night. An all around terrific effort.

Looking Ahead

The Coyotes will get an opportunity to exact a little revenge against the New York Islanders when they visit Arena Thursday night in the first of two home games. The puck drops at 7PM Arizona time.