The 42nd game of the season isn't typically thought of as a "must-win." You wouldn't know it by the way the Phoenix Coyotes or their back-up goaltender played on Tuesday night. The Coyotes finally broke out of their New Year slumber, capturing their first win of 2014, a 6-0 victory over the Calgary Flames Tuesday night. "It was a big game for us -- a must-win. We needed those points," goaltender Thomas Greiss said after his second career shutout. Greiss' 27-save shutout was the first of the season for a Coyotes team that has struggled with inconsistent defense and goaltending. "It's always nice to get a shutout," Greiss said. "The guys played really great in front of me, blocked a lot of shots and chances away, so it made it easy for me." Part of the ease was a reinvigorated Coyotes offense that scored three goals in both the second and third periods en route to their largest victory of the season. Lauri Korpikoski led the team with three points and is heating up after returning from an upper-body injury on Dec. 21. "It took some time to get my conditioning back," Korpikoski said. "But it's coming back and I feel pretty good." The Turku, Finland native has scored two goals and five points in his last four games and was selected to represent Team Finland in the 2014 Olympics. "I'm happy to be playing in the Olympics, but I want to focus the next month on getting the Coyotes in good position and contributing," Korpikoski said. Phoenix was able to dominate a team they are way above in the standings, something they have not always been capable of doing, and something many thought they wouldn't do after the first period. A rather pedestrian first period saw no goals and 14 defensive turnovers between the two teams. The initial takes on the Coyotes breaking their losing streak weren't good, but they would atone for their first period mistakes quickly in the second period. It seemed inevitable that the slow, mucky start to the game would be broken with a greasy goal. Just over two minutes into the middle period, that's exactly what happened. Captain Shane Doan, and his arm, scored the first goal of the game and his first goal since returning to the lineup after missing a handful of games with a form of Rocky Mountain fever.
Coyotes defeated the Flames 6-0
Five For Howling | Jan 8