The Phoenix Coyotes put an end to the Carolina Hurricanes eight game winning streak at home on Saturday night with a dominating, 4-0 performance. Goalie Ilya Bryzgalov was excellent in the game and stopped all 29 of Carolina's shots. It was the eighth shutout of the year for the big Russian goalie, which now leads the league.
Lee Stempniak and Martin Hanzal each had a pair of goals for the visitors.
The Hurricanes generated a few good chances and out-shot the powerful Western Conference team by a 29-20 margin, but they failed to screen the talented Phoenix goalie enough and could not capitalize on any rebounds or second chances all night.
Coach Paul Maurice seemed to think that was key part of the game, as well as the fact that the team was missing injured star Brandon Sutter. The young center is listed as day-to-day and should be able to return to action on Tuesday.
The Canes fell behind early for the third game in a row as Stempniak slipped in a wrap around attempt that seemed to fool Justin Peters just four minutes into it.
Stempniak would score another goal, this time from further out during a Coyotes four minute powerplay. Jerome Samson took the penalty when his stick got a bit high while on the forecheck. The recall from Albany skated like a banshee all night and led the team with five shots on goal.
The goal which broke Carolina's back was the third goal of the game. About mid-way through the second period, Shane Doan sent a pass to Hanzal which took a high bounce and landed right at his feet. The center made a perfect shot to put the game out of reach.
Hanzal would put up another tally in the third to close out the scoring.
Even though they were losing by a good margin, the Canes could only muster six shots on goal in the third period and looked a bit tired. But they did have a few pretty good chances earlier.
Erik Cole had a couple of breakaway attempts, but could not get the puck by the agile Phoenix goalie. Rod Brind`Amour was set up nicely at one point, but Bryzgalov was equal to the task.
The Hurricanes will take a couple of days to re-group before they take on the Boston Bruins at home on Tuesday night.
- Alexandre Picard led the team with three blocked shots. The Canes only had eight for the game.
- Carolina was credited with 30 hits. Tom Kostopoulos had a team high of four.
- The Hurricanes were 0-3 on the powerplay and had an abbreviated 5-on-3 which once again was uneventful.