Phoenix Coyotes Eek Out Win Against Tampa Bay Lightning for Franchise-Tying 43rd Win. Next Up: Florida Panthers Tomorrow
|Phoenix Coyotes coach Dave Tippitt|
Last night, the Coyotes beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1, marking the doggies 43rd win this season, a franchise-tying, single-season record.
Coyotes Coach, Dave Tippitt isn't letting the team's impressive record get to the players' heads, though. In fact, he's using it piss on their parade.
"For me, it's a skewed record because of the shootout situation," Tippett told the Associated Press after the game.
Tippitt is referiing to a recent change in NHL rules that calls for a shootout if a game is tied at the end of overtime, rather than allowing the contest to be recorded as a tie, which naturally leads to more wins.
Now hear us, Dave: the Coyotes haven't been to the playoffs in nearly a decade, attendance is God-awful, and fans weren't even sure if the team would be here next year -- so shut up, Dave. They're not throwin' an asterisk at the end of this bad boy.
Tippitt's nit-picking aside, the Howlers didn't play their best hockey last night, but it was good enough for their sixth straight win -- three of which have been on the road.
Coyotes goalie Ilya Bryzgalov was nasty, as usual, stopping 27 shots and closing the door on two, back-to-back Lightning power plays in the third period.
Bryzgalov allowed one goal in the second period, after Lightning forward Brandon Bochenski drew three defenders off of Todd Fedoruk and then fed him the puck at the last second, which opened up the shot.
The Coyotes scored twice in just under two minutes about half way through the first period, but the rest of the game was unproductive for the doggies on offense.
The first goal was a quick one-timer off the stick of Vernon Fiddler after a perfect feed from Lee Stempniak.
The Coyotes second goal -- less than two minutes later -- was by Matthew Lombardi, when he slipped a quick backhand past Lightning goalie Antero Nittymaki.
The Coyotes are now five points behind San Jose for the conference lead, but barring a catastrophe, the team is almost certainly playoff bound.
The Coyotes hit the ice again tomorrow night, when they travel to Florida to take on the Panthers. The puck drops at 4:30 p.m. and can be seen on the Fox Sports Network. For more information, go to coyotes.nhl.com.