|@ Coyotes (28-31-6)||0||2||3||5|
- Vincent Trocheck was easily the best player on the ice for the Panthers in the 1st period. He had at least 4 quality scoring chances including two really nice rushes up the left wing. He also had a wide open chance at the right side of the net but put the puck off the post. Bjugstad and Rau looked pretty good in the period as both had a couple good shots and some defensive plays.
- Quinton Howden set up Logan Shaw for a point-blank shot on net after stealing the puck just outside the offensive zone blue line. The Panthers also had an early power play, but weren’t able to score despite some pretty good cycling.
- Al Montoya wasn’t really tested, but he was fairly solid when he had to face some shots. Overall, it was quiet period offensively as there weren’t many grade-A scoring chances aside from the ones Trocheck had.
- The Panthers played a much better second period overall, but it was their turnovers that really put them in a small hole. With the Panthers starting the period on the power play, Reilly Smith attempted to jump around a defender at the offensive zone blue line, but the puck was stolen away by Martinook. He went in alone on a breakaway and scored on Al Montoya.
- The second Coyotes goal came after Jakub Kindl made a back pass behind the Panthers net to Alex Petrovic. However, Petrovic missed it and it came onto the stick of Antoine Vermette who sent it cross-ice to Alex Tanguay for the goal.
- Between those goals and after them, the Panthers were in pretty good shape. They had a couple power plays which they nearly scored on after Jiri Hudler fed Jussi Jokinen for a one-timer. Howden also found Shaw driving the net for a redirection, but Louis Domingue stopped that too.
- At the end of the period, the Panthers began to turn things on. They spent a lot of time in the Coyotes’ zone, and it seemed to be only a matter of time before they put one past Domingue. Ekblad would eventually score on a great pass by Jussi Jokinen with a few minutes left in the period and that gave the team hope of a comeback.
- More turnovers. That was the theme of the 3rd period and there’s really not much else to say. Aside from the Coyotes’ 4th goal which came off a brutal interference call on Jaromir Jagr, the Panthers were just not good enough in front of Al Montoya. Shane Doan scored almost immediately after the power play began. After that, Anthony Duclair was awarded a penalty shot, however Montoya poke-checked the puck off of his stick as he tried to make a move
- The Panthers had two notable offensive opportunities in the 3rd. Kyle Rau was on a 2-on-1 with Logan Shaw, and after Rau shot it, the rebound came right into the slot for Quinton Howden who has robbed by a sprawled-out Louis Domingue. Later on in the period, Nick Bjugstad was stopped on a 2-on-1 with Jiri Hudler.
- The 4th Coyotes goal came on a turnover at the Panthers defensive zone blue line. Arizona was able to change direction quickly and Antoine Vermette was at the front of the net for a deflection. The 5th and final Coyotes goal came just near the end of the period as a Duclair rebound ended up on the stick of Alex Tanguay who was all alone on the left side of the net..
This wasn’t a pretty game and we all know that, so there’s not much more that needs to be said that hasn’t been already. The Panthers just need to clear their heads and rebound from this below-average road trip, and hopefully the returns of Jonathan Huberdeau and Derek MacKenzie in the next couple of days will allow them to do just that.
The Panthers head home to begin a 3-game homestand on Monday against the Bruins. Stay tuned for our coverage of that game.