A certain Rob Schneider quote from a certain Adam Sandler football movie comes to mind.
Coming into Tuesday’s game playing some of their best hockey of the season, the Arizona Coyotes failed to show up while hosting the imposing St. Louis Blues.
St. Louis scored in each period, and the Coyotes were nowhere near ready to keep pace. Center David Backes was at one point responsible for four consecutive goals, and the Coyotes were long out of the game by the time he was done.
The Blues’ onslaught made for a decisive 6-0 victory. The Coyotes had won four of their last five, but that success quickly became a distant memory in light of Tuesday’s decision.
Backes became the second Blues player to record a hat trick against Arizona this season — the first being left wing Jaden Schwartz, who also found the back of the net for the Blues’ final goal Tuesday.
The Coyotes fell to 15-20-4, including 8-9-3 at home. Their 34 points are the second-lowest mark in the Western Conference standings. St. Louis improved to 24-13-3 and now boasts the fourth-most points in the West.
Here’s a look at Tuesday’s blowout, by the numbers:
The Blues were able to convert on their first two power plays, and they finished 3-for-5 with a man advantage. Arizona, meanwhile, went 0-for-1. Tuesday’s game was the continuation of a trend, because the Blues went 4-for-4 on power plays when the two teams met in October; Arizona, at least, got one score out of four opportunities in that game.
Yes, the Coyotes’ futility Tuesday can’t totally be blamed on goaltender Mike Smith, as the home team allowed St. Louis to take a barrage of shots on goal, but the final box score doesn’t look pretty for the 32-year-old netminder. He has now allowed five goals or more six times this season, including giving up six goals twice to the Blues. The 32-year-old goalie’s record fell to 6-16-2 with Tuesday’s decision.
The Coyotes have now been shut out seven times this season, and Tuesday’s stumble tied their biggest shutout loss — the other which happened two games ago — and their widest margin of defeat.
In two games against the Blues this season — both being at Gila River Arena — the Coyotes have been outscored by a whopping 12-1 margin. As mentioned before, Arizona has given up a hat trick in both defeats. The Coyotes face the Blues one last time in 2014-15 — on Tuesday, Feb. 10, in St. Louis. It’s a good thing the two teams are getting away from Glendale, because the Coyotes haven’t beaten St. Louis there since March 22, 2011.
The final score reflected the disparity in shots on goal, as St. Louis dominated the category 39-23, one of the widest margins this season for the Coyotes.
One of the few categories in which the Coyotes did well was hits, as they finished with a 50-32 advantage. It didn’t seem to have any effect on the scoreboard, apparently.