It wasn’t pretty by any stretch of the imagination, but the Arizona Coyotes found a way to win.
Martin Hanzal scored the overtime winner and Mike Smith made 43 saves en route to a 3-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks at Gila River Arena on Saturday night.
1-0 Arizona - The Coyotes got on the board quickly in the first period after Jordan Martinook created a two-on-one opportunity. Brent Burns had too much ice to try and cover, and Martinook was able to find Tobias Rieder for the easy one-timer. Assist to Martinook on the goal at 1:55.
2-0 Arizona - Arizona tallied another power play marker on a smooth move by Max Domi. He created space for himself in the near-side faceoff circle and used a perfect Martin Hanzal screen to sneak the puck past Martin Jones. Assists to Hanzal and Anthony DeAngelo on the power play goal at 7:53.
2-1 Arizona - The Sharks got one back early in the third, as Joe Pavelski set himself up in front of Mike Smith, and tipped home a Justin Braun shot to bring the Sharks to within one. Assists to Braun and Marc-Edouard Vlasic on the goal at :41.
2-2 Tie - As in the Vancouver game, the Sharks climbed all the way back to tie it. Tommy Wingels set himself up beside Mike Smith, and Matt Nieto’s point shot deflected in off of Wingels. Assists to Nieto and David Schlemko on the goal at 10:28.
3-2 Arizona - Unlike in their previous two overtime games, the Coyotes came out on top. Alex Goligoski took a point shot that Martin Hanzal deflected perfectly up and over Martin Jones’ left shoulder. Assists to Goligoski and Radim Vrbata on the goal at 1:16.
- Will San Jose be looking ahead? - The Sharks were aggressive early and late. They looked hungry to finish their road trip on a positive note, and they came away with a point for their efforts.
- Who will get in front of the net? - Two of Arizona’s three goals tonight came with Martin Hanzal planted in front of Martin Jones. The Coyotes need a lot more of that.
- Can the Coyotes give their goalies a break? - Nope.
Players of the Game
San Jose - Joe Pavelski - Pavelski was a tour de force for the Sharks tonight, scoring a goal and taking seven shots on net in 21:12.
Arizona - Mike Smith - The Coyotes don’t even get one point without Mike Smith’s stellar goaltending. He stopped 43 of 45 shots for the Coyotes.
- For the reaction from San Jose, be sure to check out Fear the Fin.
- The Coyotes opted to skate seven defensemen as they scratched Lawson Crouse for injury reasons, as well as Dylan Strome.
- Hanzal’s two point night was his second on the season, and his first since the season opener versus Philadelphia in October.
- In their two meetings with the Coyotes, the Sharks registered 86 shots on goal.
- Referee Francois St. Laurent was forced to leave the game in the first period due to illness. Garrett Rank finished the game as the sole referee.
- Our thoughts and prayers go out to Craig Cunningham of the Tucson Roadrunners, as he was rushed to the hospital before puck drop tonight after collapsing on the ice.
The Coyotes are off until Wednesday, when they get a re-match against the Vancouver Canucks. Puck drop is at 8 PM at Gila River Arena.