Arizona have been swept by Chicago for the season in painful fashion. After finishing the first period all tied up, the Coyotes’ offense dried up despite out shooting the Blackhawks in both the second and third periods.
Meanwhile, Patrick Kane and his Blackhawk buddies had other ideas, as Kane led his team with a hat trick to demoralize the Coyotes who already looked a bit shaky against one of the Western Conference’s best.
Mike Smith was dreadful and is potentially still concussed, finishing his one of his worst nights of the season with a lowly .793 save percentage, paving the way for a 6-3 Chicago victory.
1-0 Chicago - Richard Panik makes a stretch pass to Jonathan Toews entering his offensive zone at the other end of the ice. Catching the Coyotes’ off guard, the Blackhawks get a two on one chance with Luke Schenn the only defender back. Toews perfectly places a pass horizontally across the zone to Nick Schmaltz who is able score off a one timer on a desperate Mike Smith. Assists to Toews and Panik at 0:37.
1-1 Tie - Carrying the puck into the zone alone, Alexander Burmistrov settles things down behind the net and waits for the troops to arrive. Once there is traffic infront of the net, Burmistrov throws it in front where it looks intended for Max Domi but lands instead on the end of Jakob Chychrun’s stick. Chychrun quickly snaps a shot and the puck finds itself in the back of the net. Assists to Burmistrov and Domi at 7:36.
2-1 Chicago - The Coyotes are unable to strip Marian Hossa of the puck behind the net and Hossa manages to get a pass to the front of the net to Ryan Hartman who is all alone in front of the net. Ryan White recognizes the danger and goes to mark Hartman, but it is too late as Hartman slips a shot between Smith’s glove and left pad to take back the lead for the Blackhawks. Assist to Hossa at 10:28.
3-1 Chicago - After the Coyotes’ turnover the puck in their own zone, Patrick Kane surprises Mike Smith with a shot from a bad angle which slips in to the back of the net between Smith and the right post. Assists to Ryan Hartman and Tanner Kero at 16:41.
3-2 Chicago - Ryan White enters the offensive zone against Michal Rozsival and dumps the puck hard against the boards behind the net. He then weaves his way around Rozsival without the puck, collects his own rebound and scores on Corey Crawford. Assists to Alexander Burmistrov and Alex Goligoski at 17:42.
3-3 Tie - On the rush, Tobias Rieder brings the puck in along the boards on the left side and makes a drop pass right behind him for Martin Hanzal to collect. Hanzal takes the puck and throws it to net where it finds Radim Vrbata on top of Corey Crawford. Vrbata tips the puck in to tie up the score moments before the first intermission. Assists to Hanzal and Rieder at 18:39.
4-3 Chicago - After entering the zone along the boards on a rush, Nick Schmaltz passes the puck off to the trailing Michal Rozsival as he wrists the puck home past Mike Smith from between the two face-off circles. Assists to Schmatlz and Jonathan Toews.
5-3 Chicago - With the Coyotes trying to score on a 4 on 3 rush, the puck rebounds out of their offensive zone and finds the late changing Patrick Kane behind the play in the neutral zone. Kane rushes into the zone only to be caught up with by Alex Goligoski who prevents a breakaway opportunity. Goligoski then recognizes that Kane has help on the way and moves block the passing lane, giving Kane time and space to pick Mike Smith through the five-hole. Assist to Brent Seabrook at 12:41.
6-3 Chicago - After Jakob Chychrun won the puck back off Patrick Kane one on one in the Yotes’ defensive end, Jordan Martinook’s clearing pass hits Connor Murphy and gets stuck in the zone. The Blackhawks regain possession and puck finds its way back to Kane courtesy of some nifty Chicago passing before he wrists the puck home to complete a hat trick. Assists to Artemi Panarin and Artem Anisimov at 9:49.
1. Will the Coyotes keep up their progress? Unfortunately, the Chicago Blackhawks still have the Coyotes match up firmly under control for the time being. Arizona weren’t as bad as they were in the first half of the season as they kept up with Chicago for most the night, but a poor game for Mike Smith in combination with some awful turnovers was never going to get a win.
2. Can the Coyotes keep shots attempts and shots against down? Arizona managed to out shoot Chicago 37 to 29 for the night, but still lost the game as Smith finished with a disastrous save percentage of .793.
3. Will the Coyotes solve the Blackhawks goalie? After being beat 3 times in the opening period, Corey Crawford settled down and rode out the game as a difference maker, saving 28 of 31 shots faced for a .919 save percentage. Was by far the better goalie for the night.
Players of the Game
Arizona - Ryan White - Was the only Coyote to finish with a positive +/- for the night and in his 12:44 of ice time he managed a great individual effort goal, 2 shots on goal, 1 hit, 1 block and 1 takeaway.
Chicago - Patrick Kane - While Corey Crawford deserves a lot of praise for keeping the Coyotes at bay, you can’t go past Patrick Kane’s hat trick as an MVP deserving effort.
- For more on the Chicago Blackhawks, check out Second City Hockey.
- With Anthony DeAngelo recently called from the Roadrunners, he returned to the Coyotes’ lineup tonight on the second defensive pairing alongside Alex Goligoski. In his first NHL game back since being suspended for making forceful contact with a referee, DeAngelo finished as a -1, with 3 shots on goal, 2 hits and 1 block in 19:48 minutes of ice time.
- As a result of DeAngelo’s return to the lineup, Kevin Connauton once again found himself as a healthy scratch alongside Peter Holland. Lawson Crouse remains on injured reserve.
- The ‘Yotes started the night with a few shakeups on their offensive lines:
- Ex-Coyote Michal Rozsival, who is usually scratched for the Blackhawks, was a late addition to the Chicago lineup replacing Vinnie Hinostroza. Rozsival finished the night with the game winning goal scored in the early minutes of the second period.
With that goal, Radim Vrbata extends his point streak to 7 games, matching a career-high for the vet, who is nearing 1,000 NHL games.— Dave Vest (@davest4yotes) February 24, 2017
Tippett said Domingue will get the start tomorrow vs. the #Stars.— Sarah McLellan (@azc_mclellan) February 24, 2017
The Coyotes stay on the road, immediately visiting the Dallas Stars tomorrow (Friday) night. Puck drop is at 6:30pm Arizona time and the game can be viewed on Fox Sports Arizona Plus or tuned into on ESPN Phoenix 620 AM.