The Arizona Coyotes took full advantage of a struggling Edmonton Oilers club Wednesday at Gila River Arena.
The Oilers were just 29-44-9 last season, and they came into Glendale with a 0-2-1 mark to start this campaign.
However, Edmonton made its presence known early with a Taylor Hall score not even two minutes into the contest.
The Coyotes came back with two goals in the period, but Oilers defenseman Mark Fayne knotted it up before the first intermission.
The Coyotes netted the only two goals of the second frame, but Edmonton hung around with a Mark Arcobello goal early into the third period. Arizona then rattled off three off the game’s next four goals, emerging by a 7-4 final.
Coyotes left wing Mikkel Boedker recorded a hat trick in the game, including a power-play goal and an empty netter, and four of his teammates — Kyle Chipchura, Connor Murphy, Rob Klinkhammer and Martin Erat — notched their first scores of the season.
Arizona improved to 2-1-0 with victory, putting them at a tie for fifth place in the Pacific Division.
Here’s a look at Wednesday’s game by the numbers:
1 (part I)
Murphy, a rookie last year, doubled his career goal total with a second-period wrist shot from more than 30 feet out. The 21-year-old defenseman had one goal and seven assists in 30 games last year.
1 (part II)
Chipchura missed the first two games of the year, so it took him just one appearance to tally his first goal of the campaign — just as he scored a goal in the season opener last year. However, it would be 12 games before the center found the net again in 2013-14. Let’s hope he doesn’t go on a similar slide this time around.
The Coyotes had not recorded a multi-goal period in their first two games, but they reached the feat in all three frames Wednesday. The contest also saw them record their shortest time between goals so far this year: 1 minute, 7 seconds. Murphy and Klinkhammer put in back-to-back scores in the second period, giving Arizona a two-goal advantage at that point.
Hall’s goal just under a minute and a half into the contest was the quickest somebody has scored on Arizona this season.
Arizona went 1-for-4 on power plays Wednesday, the score being their third with an advantage this year. Conversely, the team held Edmonton scoreless on two power play opportunities in the game.
Defenseman Keith Yandle picked up his fourth assist of the season — tied for second most in the NHL — on the Coyotes’ first goal of the game.
Boedker’s first career hat trick puts him at five goals so far this season, which is tied for second in the NHL. It took the 24-year-old left wing 24 games last year to record his fifth goal, and he finished with 19. The Denmark native also recorded his first assist of the season on Murphy’s score. Captain Shane Doan said last week that Boedker might be capable of growing into an 80-points-per-season player for the Coyotes. So far, Boedker’s on a great pace to eclipse that mark, boasting six points in three games.
Perhaps lost among the flurry of Coyotes goals Wednesday was the fact Mike Smith has now allowed 10 scores (on 54 shots) in two starts this year, although his record improved to 1-1.
March 28, 2012
The Coyotes hadn’t scored seven or more goals in a contest in more than a year and a half. It last happened in a 7-4 victory over the Nashville Predators on March 28, 2012.
Even though the Coyotes have had some playoff years in between, it has been since the 2009-10 campaign since they’ve started out the season with two wins in their first three games.