Coyotes can’t keep up with Senators
GLENDALE, Ariz. — Chewed out by their goalie, in an 0-for-29 power-play slump and losers of three in a row, the Ottawa Senators were in a bad mood when they came to Arizona and they took it out on the erratic Coyotes.
Five Ottawa players scored, two on power plays, in the Senators’ 5-1 victory on Saturday night.
Craig Anderson had 31 saves for the Senators, who scored five straight after the Coyotes took an early lead on Mikkel Boedker’s goal.
Milan Michalek, Clarke MacArthur, Mike Hoffman, Cody Ceci and David Legwand scored for Ottawa. The goals by Michalek and Ceci came on power plays.
The Senators’ Mika Zibanejad had two assists.
Much of Ottawa’s damage came in front of the net, a major point of emphasis of coach Dave Cameron in Friday’s practice.
"That’s how you have to score in this league," Cameron said. "And the longer the season goes, the more you have to do that because everything tightens up and it becomes more of a battle. If you don’t get into those areas, you’ll get some chances, but usually not enough to win games."
Mike Smith had 28 saves for Arizona.
Coach Dave Tippett said Smith doesn’t deserve all the blame.
"Certainly everybody would like to see more saves," he said. "I’d like to see more saves but I’d like to see more NHL plays made. There’s some stuff that is happening in front of him that is unacceptable. You shouldn’t pile on the goalie."
It was the first game since Anderson, after Thursday’s 5-2 loss at Colorado, said his teammates need to get "meaner" and "tougher."
"In Colorado, from myself to everybody else on the team, we weren’t happy with the result that we got and we wanted to do something about it," Anderson said after Saturday’s win. "The sun came out the next day and we were able to put it behind us. You learn from your mistakes and you move forward."
After going 3 for 5 on the power play in Thursday’s 4-1 win over Winnipeg, the Coyotes were 0 for 5 against Ottawa.
For the second game in a row, the Coyotes scored early.
Boedker’s left wrister in front glanced off the crossbar and into the net and Arizona led 1-0 at 4:31 of the opening period.
Ottawa came back with two first-period goals. The first came on a power play when Michalek knocked in a loose puck in front of the net at 7:08.
The Senators took the lead at 13:09 when MacArthur took a short pass and tapped it into the empty left side of the net.
Arizona’s Brandon Gormley came tantalizingly close to the tying goal midway through the second period. His slap shot from the blue line glanced off one post, traveled down the goal line to the other post, then bounced away.
Moments later, Keith Yandle’s attempt to clear the puck from in front of the Arizona net was intercepted by Hoffman, who passed to Zibanejad. He sent it back to Hoffman, who scored in front of the net and it was 3-1 at 9:21 of the second.
Cody Ceci scored early in the third, then Legwand capped the rout with a goal with seven seconds to go.
NOTES: Brothers Michael Stone of Arizona and Mark Stone of Ottawa played against each other for the first time in their NHL careers. Another pair of brothers play for the two teams Milan Michalek of Ottawa and brother Zbynek of Arizona, but Zbynek missed his second straight game with an upper body injury. … Coyotes were without Martin Hanzal, also with an upper-body injury. … Arizona’s Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Ottawa’s Bobby Ryan were selected to the All-Star game. … In the past five games, the feast-or-famine Coyotes lost 6-0, won 6-3, lost 6-0, won 4-1 and lost 5-1.