Boedker’s first hat trick propels Coyotes past Oilers
GLENDALE, Ariz. — Mikkel Boedker scored on a power play, a soft backhander that trickled in and into an empty net.
An interesting collection of goals for his first career hat trick — and his team needed nearly all of them.
Boedker scored two of his three goals in the third period and added an assist, helping the Arizona Coyotes outlast the winless Edmonton Oilers 7-4 on Wednesday night.
"It’s going to even out eventually, but when you’re hot, things tend to go in," said Boedker, who has five goals in three games. "Right now, that’s the way it’s going and it’s a good feeling."
The Coyotes played a solid defensive game in beating the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.
They weren’t quite as good against Edmonton, giving up numerous good scoring chances in front of Mike Smith, who had some good moments but still gave up at least four goals for the second straight game.
Arizona made up for it by taking advantage of the defenseless Oilers with a by-committee scoring effort.
Martin Erat had a goal and assist, while Connor Murphy, Kyle Chipchura and Rob Klinkhammer each scored goals. Shane Doan and Martin Hanzal each added a pair of assists for the Coyotes, who had 13 players with at least one point.
"That’s committee, but we need a good hard practice tomorrow, the committee does," Arizona coach Dave Tippett said with a smile.
Edmonton scored four goals for the second time in three games, but remains winless because of its shortcomings on defense.
The Oilers lost 6-1 to the Kings Tuesday night and were even worse against the Coyotes, watching as they scored one goal after another on Ben Scrivens.
Taylor Hall had two goals, and Marc Arcobello and Mark Fayne each scored for Edmonton, which has allowed 23 goals while opening the season 0-3-1.
"I like the effort, the guys are trying, but we just haven’t got the results yet," Oilers coach Dallas Eakins said.
The Coyotes needed nearly all their goals after a second straight shaky performance by Smith.
Arizona’s No. 1 goalie said he felt uncomfortable in the season opener and it showed, giving up every goal in a 6-2 home loss to Winnipeg.
The Coyotes started back-up Devon Dubnyk on Saturday and he played well, stopping 24 shots in a 3-2 overtime win against the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings. Smith spent his time off working on his comfort level in the crease, saying he felt better after a few days of work with goalie coach Sean Burke.
Smith was back between the pipes against Edmonton and gave up a goal on the third shot he faced. It was a tough chance, though; Hall scored on a one-timer from right outside the crease after the Coyotes had trouble clearing the zone and the puck ended up on Jordan Eberle’s stick.
Smith got a bit of a bad break on Edmonton’s second goal when a dump-in by Leon Draisaitl took a strange carom off the backboards right out front to Fayne, who punched it in for his first of the season.
Arcobello scored on a 3-on-1 early in the third period and Hall cut Arizona’s lead to 6-4 late in the period against Smith, who stopped 23 shots.
"There’s progress in his game, but I’m sure he’d like to be better," Tippett said.
But four goals wasn’t nearly enough the way Edmonton’s defense has been playing.
Boedker scored on a power play in the first period, sneaking behind the Oilers after Smith started the play with his first assist of the season.
Chipchura put Arizona up 2-1 late in the period with a one-timer off a nice feed from Joe Vitale behind the goal.
Murphy beat Scrivens with a wrister from the top of the left circle in the second period, and Klinkhammer scored 1:07 later on a one-timer out front on a feed from behind by Erat.
Boedker put the Coyotes back up two goals midway through the third period, flipping a soft backhander that Scrivens blocked, but inadvertently knocked back into the goal with the inside of his left pad.
Boedker closed it out by practically skating the puck into the goal for his empty-netter.
"It’s tough to swallow," Hall said. "We’d love to give up less goals and score more, but it’s just not happening right now."