Duclair, Domingue lead Coyotes over Predators in shootout
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Radim Vrbata has a move he likes to use in shootouts, and it worked again for a goal that helped the Arizona Coyotes beat the Nashville Predators 3-2 on Thursday night.
The 35-year-old forward also tied Frans Nielsen of the Detroit Red Wings for the most shootout goals in NHL history with 42.
“With this move, I think if you do it right, you can freeze the goalie where he has to respect the shot and then it’s effective,” Vrbata said.
Louis Domingue stopped 35 shots for the Coyotes and hung on in the shootout despite some hip pain. Anthony Duclair also scored in the shootout for Arizona.
Duclair had a goal in regulation as well, his first of the season, and rookie Christian Dvorak also scored for the Coyotes, who won for the third time in four games after a 1-5 start.
Matt Irwin and Craig Smith had the goals for Nashville.
Domingue stopped shootout attempts by Filip Forsberg and Ryan Johansen to seal the win.
“It’s never going to be the prettiest game, but we’re going to find ways,” Domingue said.
The Predators lost four of five games on a West Coast road trip that ended in Arizona, though they earned two overtime points.
Duclair tied it 2-all at 5:48 of the third period. He scored 20 goals in a breakout 2015-2016 season, but took 10 games to get his first of 2016-17.
“It was bound to happen,” Duclair said. “It’s been a bit of a challenge but at the same time I’ve been embracing it.”
The game went to overtime and Domingue was busy, stopping six shots while the Coyotes did not manage one.
The last 2 minutes of overtime saw the Predators on their seventh power play, and the action was halted momentarily while Domingue was examined by a trainer.
“I was cramping a lot in the hip section,” he said.
Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said he hadn’t decided if Domingue will play Friday night at Anaheim.
Nashville finished 1 for 7 on the power play.
Dvorak, recalled from the club’s AHL affiliate in Tucson three days after being sent down, scored his first NHL goal at 9:17 of the first period. He took a pass from Ryan White, then displayed some nifty stick-handling to free himself for a backhand that went off Pekka Rinne’s pads.
The goal gave Arizona a 1-0 lead. Dvorak became the third Coyotes player to score his first career goal this season.
The Predators got on the board with Irwin’s wrister from left of the net, which zipped through traffic and was close to being deflected. Irwin’s goal, at 17:55 of the first, was his second in two games.
The Predators outshot the Coyotes 18-6 in the first period but went 0 for 3 on power plays in the first 20 minutes.
“We let a game get away,” coach Peter Laviolette said. “They picked up their game in the second and third and we didn’t respond to it.”
The Predators failed to convert on their first four power plays of the game, but the fifth one produced Smith’s team-leading fifth goal of the season. Smith fired in a shot off a pass from P.K. Subban at 16:35 of the second period to give Nashville a 2-1 lead.
Irwin took a hard hit from the Coyotes’ Jamie McGinn at the 15-minute mark, and the resulting boarding penalty led to Smith’s power-play goal.
Arizona went 0 for 3 with the man advantage and has gone four games and 12 power plays without converting.
NOTES: Arizona’s Martin Hanzal missed the game with a lower-body injury sustained in Tuesday’s win over San Jose. D Michael Stone also sat out with an upper-body injury, his third straight game missed. ... F Tobias Rieder was also scratched. He is dealing with a lower-body injury from the team’s previous game, and his streak of consecutive games played ended at 163. ... Nashville captain Mike Fisher did not play due to an upper-body injury and is day to day. ... D Matt Carle and F Harry Zolnierczyk were also scratched for Nashville. ... Rinne celebrated his 34th birthday. ... Mike Ribeiro was repeatedly booed when he touched the puck or had his name announced. He was unpopular with fans during his brief time with the Coyotes.
Predators: Host Carolina on Saturday night, the start of a four-game homestand.
Coyotes: At Anaheim on Friday night.