Svechnikov, Aho rally Hurricanes over Coyotes
Jaccob Slavin also scored and Trevor van Riemsdyk had two assists for Carolina, which scored four straight goals and rallied from a 2-0 deficit for its fourth win in six games. James Reimer stopped 30 shots.
Both of Aho’s goals came in the third period, one for a 4-2 lead and the second with 34 seconds left to play, into an empty net for his team-leading 29th of the season. The Hurricanes moved into the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.
“Yeah, I didn’t love our first (period). It wasn’t bad, couple bad bounces there, then we get down two and that was the turning point really, I thought that made us dig in,” Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “It’s easy to say, ‘Oh man, here we go again,’ bad breaks this and that. The guys didn’t, they hunkered down. We had a really good rest of the second period.”
Alex Goligoski had a goal and assist, Conor Garland scored his team-high 19th and Christian Dvorak got his fifth goal in seven games for the Coyotes, who have lost six of seven. Arizona’s streak of points at home ended at eight games.
Goligoski was credited with his fourth of the season at 15:45 of the first period when his shot deflected off the stick of Aho and slipped past Reimer. It was Goligoski’s first goal since Dec. 14.
Dvorak made it 2-0 with a power-play goal when he tapped in Nick Schmaltz’s shot that bounced off Reimer’s pads at 4:06 of the second period.
But it took the Hurricanes only one minute to answer.
Svechnikov was free in front of the net for the rebound of Haydn Fleury’s shot for his 21st goal of the season and later added his 22nd, second-most on the team. Slavin tied it at 2 at 9 minutes of the period with a one-timer off a pass from behind the net from Ryan Dzingel.
Svechnikov scored again at 11:01 of the second for the Hurricanes’ first lead of the game.
“You can really see that he has some confidence right now,” Aho said of his linemate Svechnikov.
“The first goal was my fault. I lost track of the puck and didn’t take the guy going to the net,” Arizona’s Jakob Chychrun said. “It’s just little things you’ve got to do. I didn’t do that on the first one and it went downhill from there.”
After Aho’s goal 63 seconds into the third period made it 4-2, Garland hustled to get his stick on Chychrun’s shot and score at 3:27. But Arizona couldn’t tie it despite a late power play.
Antti Raanta finished with 26 saves for Arizona.
Coach Rick Tocchet said he didn’t see enough physicality from his team, especially against Svechnikov and Aho.
“There was a six, seven-minute stretch, we got soft. We just did dumb things. That’s what upsets me and the staff. It’s just stupidity,” Tocchet said. “We’re not looking to kill people … but you’ve got to get through people and get on people. We made a push at the end. We had our looks. But we should never leave it to that. We should have locked it down when it was 2-nothing.”
NOTES: The Coyotes called up D Robbie Russo from AHL Tucson before Thursday’s game, but scratched him in favor of D Aaron Ness. Arizona has two regular defensemen out with injuries in captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Jason Demers, who was place on injured reserve. … Arizona F Phil Kessel moved into a tie with Andrew Cogliano for sixth place on the NHL’s all-time consecutive games list with No. 830. … Hurricanes F Jordan Martinook, a former Coyotes player, was the only scratch for Carolina. He was held out with a back injury. … Actor, comedian and TV host Nick Cannon, in town to promote his live show at Gila River Arena in April, attended Thursday’s game.
Carolina: at Vegas Golden Knights on Saturday night.
Arizona: at Boston Bruins on Saturday night.