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Arizona Coyotes win home opener against Flyers

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It took going to overtime but the boys got it done.

NHL: Philadelphia Flyers at Arizona Coyotes Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The 20th season of the Coyotes started with an amazing light show, courtesy of glowing wrist bands given to each fan in attendance and player introductions. Helping to celebrate the new season Nikolai Khabibulin dropped the first puck.

While the flashy pregame production had fans in attendance in awe, it didn't have anything on what happened on the ice last night.

First Period

The Coyotes came out fast and strong against the Flyers, who unfortunately forgot how to count. Back to back. The young guns flew around the ice before the Coyotes got their third power play of the night, which resulted in the first goal of the season. Scored on the power play, Shane Doan's first goal of the season and the first for the Coyotes, came just a few seconds into the Flyers third penalty of the night at 8:49 in the first. After a goalie interference review, it was still a good goal. Christian Dvorak earned his first NHL point on the secondary assist on the play. 1-0 Coyotes.

At 12:31 the Coyotes got pinned in their own zone and a shot from the point by Nick Schultz, was tipped the puck past Smith by Michael Raffl, tying the game. 1-1 Tie

At 14:00 minutes the Flyers were buzzing around the Coyotes zone again and seemingly scored. The play was reviewed and it was inconclusive if the puck ever crossed the goal line. I guess this is a good reason for Smith to be wearing black pads this season. Something he commented on after the game.

Shortly after at 14:17 the Coyotes rush back into the Flyers Zone and Jakob Chychrun, takes a shot, got his own rebound back and goes for the wrap around goal, where Martin Hanzal finished the job. Chychrun got his first NHL point with a primary assist. 2-1 Coyotes

The Coyotes take a You Can't Count (too many men) penalty towards the end of the first period, they would start on the penalty kill.

Second Period

It didn't take long for the Coyotes to get their first shorthanded goal for the year. Jordan Martinook created a turnover, surprisingly taking the puck from Shane Gostisbehere and knocked it past Claude Giroux to Brad Richardson who did not miss, lifting the puck up over Steve Mason's shoulder. 3-1 Coyotes.

Then the game took a turn and the Coyotes fell back on their heels.

At 6:16, the Coyotes were hemmed in their own zone; Claude Giroux put his shot on net and Wayne Simmonds nets the rebound. 3-2 Coyotes.

The rest of the second period was Mike Smith standing on his head to not allow another goal.

Third Period

At 4:36 Matt Read made it 3-3 while making everyone remember that Jakob Chychrun is indeed an 18 year old defenseman. 3-3 Tie

During the period Oliver Ekman-Larsson got a bit roughed up by Wayne Simmonds, which it was probably OEL starting it.

But the most dramatic thing was a failed icing call with Chychrun and Dale Weise racing for the icing and the official blew the whistle late. Weise nudged Chychrun just enough to seen him slamming into the end boards, which hybrid icing is supposed to stop. Chychrun was able to get off the ice with some help and did return to the game. Meanwhile, Coach Dave Tippett went apocalyptic on the official who botched the icing call.

The Coyotes manage to hold on for at least one point.

Overtime

The Coyotes get hemmed in their zone (do you see the trend?) and Mike Smith makes a game saving save, Max Domi blocked a shot and clears the puck and the Coyotes are able to draw a penalty.

Oliver Ekman-Larsson keeps the puck and waits for his moment and scores the OT winner on the delayed called. Look at that, OEL doing OEL things like being clutch in Overtime with game winning goals. He now has 23 game winning goals the most of any defensemen in the NHL. Final Score 4-3 (OT)

Paw Prints

  • It looked like the first game of the season. Sloppy passes, some disconnect with new line mates. Small issues that can be fixed.
  • Unlike last year, no one came out of this game seriously injured. (YAY)
  • Mike Smith stood on his head last night.
  • The kids look just fine. Dvorak, Chychrun and Laurent Dauphin looked right where they needed to be, Lawson Crouse had a rough game.