The Coyotes took the lead early with two goals in the first ten minutes. Travis Boyd got the team started when he found some room in the faceoff circle. He picked up a pass from Nick Schmaltz, turned, and fired past Cayden Primeau putting the Coyotes up 1-0 just over the five minutes mark.
a little BING BONG for your Monday pic.twitter.com/RvUrXBVkYf— Arizona Coyotes #VOTE4PHIL (@ArizonaCoyotes) January 17, 2022
This is the Arizona Coyotes we’re talking about, though, so they almost immediately took a penalty. Liam O’Brien was called for holding, but the Canadiens failed to register a shot on goal, so no harm done at least.
Arizona used the momentum of killing the penalty to get their second of the night.
The Coyotes had gained the zone, and Phil Kessel was able to get the puck cross-ice to Johan Larsson. Larsson picked up the pass and fired it from the faceoff circle past Primeau and into the back of the net.
Don't mess with the Johan pic.twitter.com/hlLGl2B5yD— Arizona Coyotes #VOTE4PHIL (@ArizonaCoyotes) January 17, 2022
Everything seemed to be clicking for the Coyotes. They had a two-goal lead and were doing decently well preventing much Montréal offense.
The Canadiens’ play did pick up as the period went along, and they finally got their first late in the opening frame.
Jonathan Drouin picked up an errant puck and headed to the net with Rem Pitlick. Vladislav Kolyachonok lost his edge and could not pick up Pitlick, leading to an easy goal for Montréal as they cut the Coyotes’ lead in half.
But when the puck dropped for the second period, it didn’t take long for the Coyotes to regain the two-goal lead. And after getting two goals from their forwards, the Coyotes got a goal from a defenseman, with Janis Moser getting his third of the season.
Moser had the puck at the point and had tried to fire it through, only to see his shot get blocked. But then, in a tremendous showing of confidence, he crashed the net and backhanded it past Primeau, making it 3-1.
Money Moves Moser. pic.twitter.com/s4JfpEGno5— Arizona Coyotes #VOTE4PHIL (@ArizonaCoyotes) January 17, 2022
Unfortunately, the Coyotes decided the best way to capitalize on their recently regained two-goal lead was to take a bunch of penalties.
Liam O’Brien took his second penalty of the night when he was called for interference at 6:18, but the Coyotes were able to kill that one as well. But at 9:34, Ilya Lybushkin was called for interference, and the Canadiens managed to make the Coyotes pay with a Ryan Poehling goal.
Jonathan Drouin was also involved in this one, firing the initial shot from above the faceoff circle. Poehling redirected the shot down and past Vejmelka, and the Canadiens were back to being within one.
Arizona finally got their first power play 15:41 into the second period when Mike Hoffman was called for slashing. Arizona couldn’t do much with the power play, but the Coyotes ended up in the Montreal zone as the Hoffman soon after Hoffman left the box.
The puck was bouncing around in front of the net, but Antoine Roussel found was able to get the puck back to Nick Schmaltz, who was in the perfect position to knock it home.
We got you a good goal. Merry Schmaltzmas! pic.twitter.com/YHQNDYgEaf— Arizona Coyotes #VOTE4PHIL (@ArizonaCoyotes) January 17, 2022
ontreal challenged the goal, but the review of the play showed Roussel being pushed into Primeau. The goal on the ice stood, and the Canadiens were assessed a late penalty for delay of game. Arizona didn’t score on the resulting power play, and the second period ended with the Coyotes up 4-2.
Arizona doesn’t enter the third period with a lead often, but when they do, they win. The Canadiens made a goalie switch for the final frame, substituting Sam Montembeault for the final twenty.
Neither team was able to get much going to start the third, and it remained a pretty even match-up. But the turning point came with one team taking a bunch of poorly timed penalties to hurt any chance of a comeback, and this time it wasn’t the Coyotes!
Montréal took an early puck over the glass delay of call, and midway through the period, Hoffman got his second penalty of the game for slashing Clayton Keller. Arizona didn’t score on either power play, but they had a two-goal lead, and Montréal was killing precious seconds.
The Coyotes were happy to sit back and let the Canadiens beat themselves, and when Montréal pulled Montembeault, Clayton Keller was able to get the empty netter. Keller had been hunting for a goal all night, and it was great to see him get rewarded.
Montréal got another delay of game call with 19 seconds, and that was all she wrote.
The Coyotes bounce-backed from being shut out 5-0 and won their next game 5-2. There are potential lottery implications for the Coyotes winning against another team at the bottom of the standings, but the players don’t care about those. They play to win, no matter who they play, and it’s a good attitude to have moving forward.
Afternoon squad. pic.twitter.com/rXpsmmHMOi— Arizona Coyotes #VOTE4PHIL (@ArizonaCoyotes) January 17, 2022
- Nick Schmaltz - Goal and two assists
- Janis Moser - Goal and an assist
- Johan Larsson - Goal and an assist
The Arizona Coyotes are back on the road, and they will face the New Jersey Devils this Wednesday at 5:00 pm Arizona time.