A winless road trip to start a season is not good. A winless six game road trip is a disaster. The Arizona Coyotes are now looking that possibility straight in the eye.
A terrible second period and a late third period power play goal doomed the Coyotes to a fifth straight loss, as the team dropped a 5-3 decision to the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night in Newark.
1-0 Arizona - Jordan Martinook got the Coyotes off to a strong start with a rebound off a shot by Alex Goligoski. The line of Martinook, Anthony Duclair, and Jamie McGinn had done an excellent job hemming the Devils in. Assists to Goligoski and McGinn on the goal at 7:04.
1-1 Tie - Taylor Hall is scary good. The winger scored his first of the night immediately off the faceoff on a shot so quick that Justin Peters didn’t even see it. The players screening Peters didn’t help matters either. Assist to Pavel Zacha on the goal at 8:43.
2-1 New Jersey - Taylor Hall recorded his second goal of the night by embarrassing Luke Schenn on the zone entry. Schenn froze between challenging Hall to the puck and sitting back in the lane, and Hall deked by him with ease to score on Peters. Assists to Pavel Zacha and Damon Severson on the power play goal at 9:40.
3-1 New Jersey - Adam Henrique potted his first goal after Michael Stone attempted to clear the puck from the crease. The puck “cleared” straight into Henrique, who instinctively batted the puck into the net. Assists to Reid Boucher and Devante Smith-Pelly on the goal at 14:03.
3-2 New Jersey - Oliver Ekman-Larsson pulled the Coyotes back to within one after being left all alone at the near-side point. Four players were in front of Devils’ goaltender Cory Schneider, which prevented him from seeing Ekman-Larsson’s slapshot. Assists to Michael Stone and Max Domi on the goal at 7:51.
3-3 Tie - The Coyotes converted on a late power play courtesy of Oliver Ekman-Larsson. OEL shot through the entire Devils’ penalty kill and Martin Hanzal to sneak the puck past Schneider. Assists to Hanzal and Michael Stone on the power play goal at 13:53.
4-3 New Jersey - After a huge power play goal to tie it, Arizona was shorthanded late on a questionable high-sticking call against Connor Murphy and an equally questionable no-call on an apparent high stick on Martin Hanzal. Oliver Ekman-Larsson broke the wrong way and left Travis Zajac with enough room to shoot. Justin Peters, despite having a clean look at the shot, let it go through five-hole to give the Devils the lead. Assists to Taylor Hall and Damon Severson on the power play goal at 17:59.
5-3 New Jersey - Just in case the Coyotes weren’t angry enough at the officials, a sure icing on the Devils deflected off of a linesman at center ice. With Arizona’s net empty, Travis Zajac had an easy second goal on the night. Assist to Ben Lovejoy on the empty-net goal at 19:46.
- Who can get the job done in net? - Well, tonight it was not Justin Peters. Peters gave up four goals on 34 shots, including a soft game-winner that the Coyotes desperately needed to stay out.
- Will Jamie McGinn makes his debut tonight? - McGinn both debuted for Arizona and recorded his first assist as a Coyote on Jordan Martinook’s first period goal. His line looked solid all game long.
- Can the third pairing lock it down? - Luke Schenn got absolutely abused on Taylor Hall’s second goal of the night.
Players of the Game
Arizona - Jordan Martinook - Oliver Ekman-Larsson had two goals, but his defensive miscue on the late power play helped give the Devils the game winner. Instead we’ll give it to Martinook, who opened the scoring for the Coyotes and create several chances for the Coyotes.
New Jersey - Taylor Hall - Arizona is probably happy that they only have to see Taylor Hall twice a year now. He had two goals and an assist on the night.
- For the New Jersey perspective, check out All About the Jersey.
- Jordan Martinook shifted over from wing to center for the first time since major-junior. Dylan Strome was a healthy scratch.
- Arizona’s ice-time leader was not Oliver Ekman-Larsson, but rather Michael Stone, who played 24:29 to OEL’s 23:57.
- After leading the shot attempts battle 16-8 in the first period, Arizona lost it 26-9 in the second, and lost the overall battle 50-46.
- Taylor Hall now has 10 goals in 23 career games versus Arizona.
- At 1-5-0, Arizona is off to its worst start in franchise history.
Arizona’s last chance to avoid a winless road trip will come on Thursday, as the Coyotes travel to Philadelphia to finish their season series against the Flyers. Puck drop is at 4 PM Arizona time.