ARIZONA COYOTES

Coyotes have up-and-down showing in lopsided loss to Kings

Sep 28, 2017, 10:47 PM
Arizona Coyotes left wing Brendan Perlini, left, of England, tries to get a shot in on Los Angeles ...
Arizona Coyotes left wing Brendan Perlini, left, of England, tries to get a shot in on Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick during the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

The Arizona Coyotes were nearly shut out on Thursday night in what ended up being a one-sided contest against the Los Angeles Kings in the preseason.

The Coyotes were on the losing end of a 4-1 final score at the Staples Center, playing their second-to-last preseason game as a handful of roster decisions remain for head coach Rick Tocchet and his staff.

Defense is one position where a final group has yet to be made official, and it so happened that both Adam Clendening and Kevin Connauton were in the lineup as Oliver Ekman-Larsson nurses a day-to-day injury.

Meanwhile, Louis Domingue was in net for the visiting club, making 34 saves on 38 shots.

Arizona played on its heels some for the first period-and-a-half of the game, and took four penalties in the first 23 minutes of regulation. At one point, the Coyotes faced a 5-on-3 penalty kill for about a minute and a half.

All that time in the box proved costly, as Kings defenseman Drew Doughty scored on a 5-on-4 power play at the 15:53 mark in the first period, the first goal of the game.

The Coyotes appeared to make an adjustment around the halfway point in the contest, possessing the puck more and keeping it in the offensive zone — not to mention staying out of the box. But they gave up yet another late-period goal, this time to Mike Cammalleri on a cross-crease feed from Alec Martinez that deflected off Dustin Brown. That goal was even-strength at 16:03 in the second period and made it 2-0 Kings.

It was only seconds into the third period that the Kings scored once again, as a chance in front for Tyler Toffoli yielded a loose puck that Jeff Carter tapped in to light the lamp at the 1:12 mark.

Moments later, Clayton Keller was called for tripping on Brown and the Kings capitalized. Jake Muzzin received the puck at the blue line and fired it at the net with a deflection from Cammalleri. The latter was credited with the power play goal — his second tally of the night — at 4:28 in the third period, making it 4-0 Kings.

It was too little too late, but at 10:54 in the third, Max Domi was above the right circle with the puck and tossed a pass through traffic over to Clayton Keller on the left. Keller fired the puck past Jonathan Quick for a power-play goal.

The Coyotes and Keller ended any hopes the Kings had for a shutout, putting the score at 4-1.

That 4-1 score was where things would remain as the Kings held on for the win. Quick stopped 37 of 38 shots faced.

THE GOOD

— The goal by Keller from Domi was a beauty and was executed nicely on the man advantage. Niklas Hjalmarsson also got an assist on that play, playing the left side in the absence of Ekman-Larsson.

— As noted before, the Coyotes made adjustments at times and showed flashes of patient, systematic hockey. But ultimately, it wasn’t enough.

THE BAD

–The Coyotes took three penalties in the first period via Christian Fischer, Mario Kempe and Tobias Rieder (Fischer and Kempe’s penalties overlapped, allowing a 5-on-3). The Kings scored on Kempe’s penalty.

LOOSE PUCKS

— Thursday was the return of Domingue, who exited the team’s last game on Monday night after taking a puck to the head. He left the game as a precaution.

— The Coyotes still have 29 players on the roster, and they have until Oct. 3 to trim that down to 23.

— Craig Morgan of 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station wrote Thursday about Dylan Strome, the former top-3 pick who’s vying for a roster spot.

— Each team had a new head coach at its helm. John Stevens was behind the bench for LA after replacing Darryl Sutter this offseason, while Tocchet replaced Dave Tippett this summer.

— Kempe was playing against his younger brother, Adrian Kempe, a Kings forward.

Speaking of Kempe:

UP NEXT

The Coyotes have just one more preseason tilt before they start their regular season slate. On Saturday, the ‘Yotes will be in San Jose to face the Sharks at 7 p.m.

Then, next Thursday, the Coyotes begin their regular season on the road in Anaheim before returning to the Valley Saturday to play their home opener against the brand new Vegas Golden Knights.

Penguin Air
Arizona Coyotes center Tobias Rieder, of Germany, falls as he goes after the puck while under pressure from Los Angeles Kings defenseman Alec Martinez during the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Kings right wing Dustin Brown, left, celebrates a goal by defenseman Drew Doughty as Arizona Coyotes goalie Louis Domingue watches during the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Arizona Coyotes left wing Brendan Perlini, left, of England, tries to get a shot in on Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick during the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick waits for a face-off during the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game against the Arizona Coyotes, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Kings defenseman Christian Folin, left, of Sweden, collides with Arizona Coyotes left wing Lawson Crouse during the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Kings left wing Michael Cammalleri, right, celebrates his goal with defenseman Alec Martinez during the second period of a preseason NHL hockey game against the Arizona Coyotes, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Kings left wing Tanner Pearson, left, tries to get a shot in on Arizona Coyotes goalie Louis Domingue during the second period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Arizona Coyotes defenseman Kevin Connauton, left, and Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar, of Slovenia, vie for the puck during the second period of a preseason NHL hockey game, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

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