This was a hard-fought win by the Arizona Coyotes. Though the Colorado Avalanche had their fair share of dangerous chances, and the Coyotes were by no means perfect, Arizona controlled most of the game. Nights like this are a huge step in the right direction for the Coyotes.
Where scoring has been an issue, three different players came through to hit the back of the net. Now if only they could get the top line scorers going, then they’d really be rolling.
1-0 Coyotes (Rieder): Tobias Rieder tapped in a beautiful drop pass from Brendan Perlini to score his 6th goal of the season, just 54 seconds into the first period. Jakob Chychrun was credited with the secondary assist off of the initial pass to Perlini.
1-1 Avalanche (Rantanen): Mikko Rantanen corraled a lead pass from defenseman Erik Johnson and fired a top-shelf wrist shot over the shoulder of Antti Raanta to tie it up 1-1. Captain Gabriel Landeskog was credited with the secondary assist on the goal scored at 3:56 in the first.
2-1 Coyotes (Goligoski): Clayton Keller sent a wicked pass from the half boards to Alex Goligoski, who roofed a wrister from the top of the left circle to put Arizona in the lead 2-1 with 10:34 left in the second period.
3-1 Coyotes (Crouse): Fresh off a call-up from Tucson, Lawson Crouse scored his first of the season, a dirty, hard-work goal off a cross-crease pass that was all skill from Josh Archibald at 15:35 in the third. That assist also marked Archibald’s first point as a Coyote.
Will there be further retribution?
Penalties wise, it was a pretty quiet game between the Coyotes and the Avalanche. Seems like Colorado wasn’t focused on holding a grudge of any kind.
Will a Coyotes playmaker please stand up?
A few different Coyotes made it onto the scoreboard tonight, even a few defenseman. Whether Arizona’s scoring troubles are solved for good is another story, but for one night they repeatedly found the back of the net.
How flexible can Colorado’s defense be without breaking?
There’s no telling if Colorado was truly missing Tyson Barrie out there tonight, but he certainly would’ve helped them. The Coyotes broke through the Avalanche’s defenses pretty easily, so maybe they really did miss him more than they let on.
Players of the Game
Arizona - Antti Raanta: This could’ve easily been given to Lawson Crouse for coming in and scoring a goal in his first call-up game of the season, but Raanta’s stellar play is truly what kept the Coyotes in it on Wednesday.
Colorado - Mikko Rantanen: Rantanen was the only Avalanche player to make it onto the scoreboard tonight so he was the obvious choice. Honorable mention to Colorado’s goalie Semyon Varlamov.
3. Semyon Valamov (COL)
2. Antti Raanta (ARI)
1. Alex Goligoski (ARI)
- For more on the Colorado Avalanche, head on over to Mile High Hockey.
- This was a relatively quiet game on the penalties front, which is the exact opposite of what I expected considering what happened the last time these two teams met at Gila River Arena just 4 days ago.
- Lawson Crouse wouldn’t have been my first choice as an injury call-up, but it turned out to be the right choice as he found some chemistry with new Coyote Josh Archibald. I wouldn’t mind seeing more of those dirty, hard-work goals in the future.
The Coyotes have their second game of their back-to-back at home on Thursday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Scottsdale hometown-boy Auston Matthews and his Maple Leafs will be looking to add another win to their column against Arizona.
The puck drops at 7 PM AZ time on Fox Sports Arizona/Fox Sports Go and can be heard on AZ Sports 98.7 FM.