Arizona Coyotes rally in shutout win over Calgary Flames


Arizona Coyotes shutout Calgary Flames for comeback win Thursday night at Gila River Arena

Adin Vilasevic, Reporter

On Tuesday night at Gila River Arena, after a disappointing loss to Anaheim that ended the Arizona Coyotes six game winning streak,Head Coach Rick Tocchet labeled his team’s effort as “garbage.”

Thursday night the Coyotes took their garbage to the curb defeating the top team in the Pacific Division, the Calgary Flames, 2-0.

The Coyotes rallied quickly when Clayton Keller scored his 13th goal of the season at 10:15 in the first period, a shot past former Coyotes goalkeeper, Mike Smith, to score the game’s opening goal. This came after the Coyotes killed an early penalty that could have put them on their heels.

Christian Dvorak recorded his first assist of the season in his fifth game back since the pectoral injury that kept him off the ice the entire season.

In the third period Jakob Chychrun scored his fifth goal of the year to put the Coyotes up 2-0 with 17:12 left in the game.

The Flames went with an open net with four minutes left but the Coyotes were unable to take advantage when Josh Archibald grazed the post.

Darcy Kuemper put together his third shutout of the season. Kuemper is 15-4-3 with a .925 SV% and a 2.28 GAA since the new year.

Tocchet referred to Tuesday’s Anaheim loss and gave his team credit for bouncing back against a tough opponent.

“I was a little harsh on them after that game because we all want to win so badly. A bounce back game after that Anaheim game was just huge.  Calgary is a hell of a team and you know they’re gonna make some noise. They’re a tough team and I thought we did a nice job,” Tocchet said.

Tocchet also gave credit to goal scorer Clayton Keller, when, after the loss to Anaheim, he wanted to step up more.

“He wasn’t happy, and you know it’s funny because he called me yesterday and he wanted to watch video—he was determined tonight… that’s the Kells we all love right there. He just played a determined game,” Tocchet said.

The Coyotes have relied on their own sense of resiliency all season long and have leaned heavily on it during this playoff push and home stand.  However, they can ill afford the popular pastime of out of town scoreboard watching.

“We just gotta keep winning that’s it. We’re not worried about that stuff down the road. You can’t have a bad week. You might be able to have a bad day once in a while, but you can’t have a bad week,” said Tocchet.

The game also marked the return of forward Michael Grabner who missed the last 41 games due to a severe eye injury.

The Coyotes conclude this seven game home stand Saturday night when they host the Los Angeles Kings.