Many things have changes in the last 10 years. The uniforms are different, the coaches are different and the players are different. The Phoenix Coyotes wish tonight's result was also different.
Dec. 27, 2003, the first Coyotes game inside the facility now known as Jobing.com Arena. Phoenix played host to Nashville, but the Predators spoiled the christening of the new home of the Coyotes in front of a sold out crowd of 19,052 with a 3-1 victory.
Ten years later, the arena's anniversary would be spoiled too.
In the Coyotes' first game back from Christmas break, a pair of leads and goals from David Moss were not enough to eke out a pair of points against their Pacific Division rival San Jose Sharks.
In front of a sold out crowd, the Coyotes fell 4-3 in a shootout.
Phoenix held, and blew, 1-0 and 2-1 leads en route to their fourth consecutive overtime game.
For the third time in the last four games, the Coyotes ended the night with only a single point.
"We played pretty strong," coach Dave Tippett said. "A couple chances here or there, a couple bounces here or there and it could be a different outcome."
The Coyotes have not been the beneficiaries of bounces as of late. They lost in Buffalo on the infamous overtime butt goal mere days after losing in Toronto, in part, due to a fluky shootout goal that only one person saw go in.
Despite the absence of puck luck, Tippett thinks his team is playing well.
"I told the players, 'If we can play at this level the majority of the time, we'll get our fair share of points,'" Tippett said.
Phoenix earned one of the two points they hoped for, but things looked more promising early on as the Coyotes opened the scoring on Moss' fourth goal of the season and first of the night.
The Sharks made a poor centering pass from behind their own net and onto the stick of Moss. On his birthday eve, the soon-to-be 32-year-old spun around and shot the puck past an unsuspecting Antti Niemi.
On the ensuing faceoff, Kyle Chipchura and Andrew Desjardins dropped the mitts and squared off at center ice. The heavyweight bout ended with a few haymakers from Desjardins that sent Chipchura to the ice.
San Jose evened the score mid-way through the second period with a Joe Pavelski goal from a sharp angle. A Coyotes turnover found its way on to the stick of Joe Thornton who found Pavelski inside the left faceoff circle. The presumed USA Olympian sniped the puck off the back bar for his 16th goal of the season.
Moss' second goal of the night, a deflection of a David Schlemko point shot, gave the Yotes a 2-1 lead 1:08 after Pavelski tied the game.
Phoenix's euphoria wouldn't last as Derek Morris would take a penalty seconds after the goal.
The Sharks made Morris and the Coyotes pay with a power play goal. Tommy Wingels slid a pass around one Coyote and Patrick Marleau skated through two more en route to his 17th goal of the season.
Phoenix blew its second lead of the game and, like the road trip, was subsequently unable to pull away from its opponent.
Brent Burns gave the Sharks their first lead of the game with just under 10 minutes remaining in regulation. Pavelski centered a pass from behind the net and through Morris' legs to a waiting Burns.
The Coyotes countered with a power play goal to tie the game at three. Radim Vrbata patiently wristed the puck past Niemi after receiving a Mike Ribeiro pass that cleared three Sharks and one Coyote.
"We moved the puck around pretty good," Vrbata said. "Marty (Hanzal) did a good job in front of the net and (the puck) found its way (into the net)."
Phoenix dominated the final five minutes of the third period until reaching overtime once again.
A scoreless overtime sent the game to a shootout. Mikkel Boedker scored the opening goal of the shootout, Phoenix would not score again. San Jose scored on both of its attempts by Logan Couture and Marleau to win the shootout and the game.
- San Jose's perspective
- The Coyotes are now 13-4-3 when scoring first this season.
- Phoenix blocked 19 shots in the game but only two on the PK.
- Of the 19 blocks, Morris led all players with five.
- Mike Smith stopped 29 of 32 shots in 65 minutes of play, but did not make a save in the shootout.
- Attendance: 17,125
Our Three Stars of the Game
1. Joe Pavelski: Goal, assist and won 57 percent of his faceoffs. Solid game all around.
2. Dave Moss: Two goals and contributed the team's entire even strength offense.
3. Mike Ribeiro: A pair of assists in a strong offensive game.
A quick turnaround as the Coyotes hit the ice again tomorrow night in Anaheim against the Ducks. Puck drop is scheduled for 6 p.m. as the Yotes look to capture their first victory against the Ducks this season.