The Arizona Coyotes left Tempe last week for a three-game road trip. In all three games, they scored first in the opening frame, only to see their opponents begin to rebound and eventually take the lead. The Coyotes would follow that up with a comeback, tying the game. But unlike the first two games, where they ultimately fell in overtime, the Coyotes regained the lead against the Nashville Predators, winning the game 4-2.
The Coyotes didn’t have the best start against the Predators, but they started to take some control after successfully killing a Josh Brown boarding call. Then, late in the period, Nick Schmaltz got the Yotes on the board with his 14th of the season, firing home a beautiful feed from Clayton Keller.
BACK AT IT AGAIN— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 14, 2023
Keller ➡️ Schmaltz pic.twitter.com/2n2xmsVQey
Keller was named the third star of the week last week, and he and Schmaltz have been pushing each other to play their best hockey lately.
But that was just the first period; there was still plenty of hockey to be played. And the Coyotes started the second on the wrong foot when they were called for too many men just two minutes into the period.
They killed that penalty but tested fate with a Victor Söderström call not long after it ended. Söderström may not have liked the call, but the Predators did, and they tied it up with a blast from Roman Josi.
The Predators followed that up four minutes later, with Colton Sissons getting his eight of the season. It wasn’t the prettiest goal, and Karel Vejmelka certainly would want it back, but it gave the Predators their first lead of the game.
But it didn’t take long for the Coyotes to mount their comeback. Mattias Ekholm was in the box for tripping, and Lawson Crouse put home a great feed from Matias Maccelli to tie the game at 2-2.
The Sheriff on the power play pic.twitter.com/JccKYSZgFB— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 14, 2023
Also assisting on the goal was J.J. Moser, who registered his 14th point of the season. With Shayne Gostisbehere hurt and Jakob Chychrun on the trade block, you can expect to see a lot more Moser as the season comes to an end.
The Coyotes limped to the end of the period, thanks partly to Vejmelka, who shut the door after the Sissons’ goal.
Arizona needed a big period after their flat finish, and they came ready to play. Crouse sent a message early, with his second of the night and 19th of the season, again from Maccelli and Moser.
AGAIN, BABY pic.twitter.com/xZ0ekMi9Sl— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 14, 2023
Crouse has been on a roll this season, and with two goals tonight, he is just one goal away from tying his career-high 20 from last season. This is also Crouse’s second consecutive 30-point season with the Coyotes.
The Coyotes managed to keep the Predators off the board for the rest of the game. Vejmelka had to stand tall, especially during a late Nashville power play when Crouse sent the puck over the glass and sat for delay of game, but he was perfect in the final frame.
Finally, with Kevin Lankinen on the bench for the Predators, Christian Fischer hit the empty net for his ninth of the season. The Coyotes had completed the comeback, winning the game 4-2.
That'll do it. pic.twitter.com/9RcFFbMz31— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 14, 2023
Clayton Keller assisted on the goal, giving him his 29th assist. He currently has 50 points in 54 games.
After seeing the Coyotes fall to complete the comeback on back-to-back games, it was good to see the Coyotes bunker down and win one. Sure, it isn’t good for the tank, but the Coyotes have a tough stretch ahead of them, facing off against the Lightning, Avalanche, and Flames in their next three games, and they could use some positive energy.
Lines in Nashville. pic.twitter.com/7LMaBpkqgH— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 14, 2023
- Lawson Crouse - Two goals
- Matias Maccelli - Two assists
- Roman Josi - Goal
The Arizona Coyotes are returning home to host the Tampa Bay Lightning this Wednesday at 7:00 pm.