The Arizona Coyotes only gave up three goals this time. But unfortunately for them, even three goals was one too many.
Mental mistakes doomed the Coyotes to a third straight regulation loss, as they fell 3-2 to the New York Islanders in Brooklyn on Friday night. Arizona is now 1-3-0 on the season.
1-0 New York - The Islanders struck first on a defensive miscue from the Coyotes. Casey Cizikas drew the attention of Anthony Duclair, who left Dennis Seidenberg all alone on the other side of the ice. Seidenberg had all sorts of room to shoot, and he made no mistake. Assists to Cizikas and Cal Clutterbuck on the goal at 4:45.
2-0 New York - In the Battle of the Stromes, the elder brother came out on top. Johnny Boychuk skated through Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Connor Murphy, and Dylan Strome to fire point-blank at Louis Domingue. Though Domingue stopped the initial shot, Ryan Strome followed behind to give the Isles a two goal lead. Assists to Boychuk and Anthony Beauvillier on the goal at 13:31.
2-1 New York - Laurent Dauphin provided Brad Richardson with a beautiful soft feed across the blue-line less than a minute after the Strome goal. Richardson then froze Calvin de Haan and roofed a shot over the shoulder of Jaroslav Halak. Assists to Dauphin and Shane Doan on the goal at 14:09.
2-2 Tie - 13 seconds later, the Coyotes tied the game thanks to a great keep in at the line by Jakob Chychrun. Chychrun immediately fired the puck on net, and Radim Vrbata’s stick tipped the puck up and over Halak for his first goal of the season. Assists to Chychrun and Tobias Rieder on the goal at 14:22.
Despite four New York and two Arizona penalties, nobody managed to find twine in the second period, setting up a close finish in the third.
3-2 New York - The shorthanded bug continued to plague the Coyotes, as Johnny Boychuk scored the game winner off a set play in the Coyotes’ zone. Domingue may not have been able to completely see Boychuk’s slapshot, but the Coyotes could have really used a stop. Assist to Brock Nelson on the shorthanded goal at 4:24.
- Can the Coyotes keep it close? - Arizona was down by two goals for all of 38 seconds in this game, which is a significant improvement over the meltdowns of the past two games. It still was not enough to get the job done.
- Who will solidify the goal crease? - The Coyotes went back to Domingue, and he stopped 28 of 31 shots. It wasn’t the kind of performance that makes Domingue the clear favorite, but Domingue made several excellent saves tonight that will hopefully be a confidence booster.
- Can someone put the team on their back? - Nobody really took control of the game for the Coyotes, despite several respectable performances. The veterans factored in on both Coyotes goals, which is an improvement.
Players of the Game
Arizona - Jakob Chychrun - The rookie had the primary assist on Arizona’s second goal, and showed off his puck handling ability to Dennis Seidenberg’s embarrassment.
New York - Johnny Boychuk - Boychuk created two of New York’s three goals, and played extremely well in the absence of Nick Leddy.
- For the New York reaction, check out Lighthouse Hockey.
- Jamie McBain, Kevin Connauton, and Ryan White were the odd men out for Arizona tonight.
- Michael Stone returned to the Coyotes for his first game since he tore his ACL on March 26th, 2016 against Philadelphia. He played 20:28, had one shot on net, and blocked three more shots.
- New York defenseman Ryan Pulock left the game after playing just 3:27. He was recalled from AHL Bridgeport on Wednesday.
- Arizona hung with New York in shot attempts, finishing with 42 attempts at 5v5 to New York’s 43.
Arizona stays in the area for their next game, which is against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Sunday. Puck drop is at 4 PM Arizona time.