Originally written May 04, 2012 on Fang Faction:
Phoenix Coyotes 1 vs Nashville Predators 0: Coyotes lead series 3-1

The Phoenix Coyotes get the job done in Bridgestone Arena by splitting games in Nashville and heading to Jobbing.com Arena for a chance to close the series out. Mike Smith led his team to the shutout by stopping all 25 shots by the Nashville Predators. 

Although, it wasn't really Mike Smith in Game 4, Friday night. The Coyotes won because of the solid defense, shutting chances down by deflecting or blocking shots. Phoenix blocked fourteen shots and made the Predators miss the net fourteen times.

The defense was there for the Nashville Predators, clearly. Allowing only one goal is pretty damn good, but not good enough. The Predators players, coaching staff, management, fans and I now know that without Alexander Radulov and/or Andrei Kostitsyn in the lineup, scoring won't happen much.

Read more after the jump...

Paul Gaustad vs Kyle Chipchura: Friday Fight Night


Hornqvist's Hungry

Patric Hornqvist is going to have a tough time sleeping Friday night after all of the chances in Game 4. All of the chances could have been game tying goals or even game winning goals. Hornqvist had four shots blocked and five missed shots. That means, if you know how to do math, that was nine chances to score on net, that were missed.

On the positive side, Patric Hornqvist had three shots on goal. Hornqvist did the right thing by putting the shots on net, unlike some others...

If you want to read about the multiple chances Patric Hornqvist had in Game 4, read the 'Period-by-Period' section, down the page.

Ugly Hit on Hali

6:39 into the first period in Game 4, Nashville Predators forward, Matt Halischuk was hit from behind by Rostislav Klesla. The dirty hit was made in front of the Phoenix Coyotes bench. Klesla pushed Halischuk hard into the boards and went up slowly.

Matt Halischuk went to the locker room for a minute or so, but was back on the bench ready to go. That is the second time in this series where Halischuk went to the locker room. The other was in Game 3. See the ugly hit yourself.



Rostislav Klesla was only given a minor for that hit because Matt Halischuk was apparently, "okay." That is an awful call because that could cause serious injury. Bad call by the referees and should have given Klesla a major for that hit. This isn't acceptable in the NHL.

On a bit of a positive note, while Halischuk was trying to get up in the middle of a scrum, veteran Ray Whitney helped him up. Whitney was on the bench too. Class act by Whitney.

Playoffs Series Scoreboard Game Date Away Home Result Game 1 4/27 NSH PHX 3-4 PHX OT Game 2 4/29 NSH PHX 3-5 PHX Game 3 5/2 PHX NSH 0-2 NSH Game 4 5/4 PHX NSH 1-0 NSH Line Up Report

Starting Goalies: Name SV SH SV % Decision TOI #35 Pekka Rinne 23 24 .958 L 59:01 #41 Mike Smith 25 25 1.000 W 60:00 Nashville Scratches: #46 W Andrei Kostitsyn (Benched), #47 W Alexander Radulov (Benched), #7 D Jonathon Blum, #15 C Craig Smith, #17 C Chris Mueller, #23 W Brian McGrattan, # C Kyle Wilson, #38 D Jack Hillen, #49 D Ryan Ellis, #64 D Victor Bartley, #30 G Jeremy Smith and #37 G Chet Pickard

Phoenix Scratches: #37 W Raffi Torres (Suspension), #28 W Lauri Korpikoski (Lower Body), #2 D David Rundblad, #5 D Connor Murphy, #6 D David Schlemko, #12 W Paul Bissonnette, #20 D Chris Summers, #21 C Andy Miele, #26 D Michael Stone, #36 W Matt Watkins, #39 W Brett Maclean, #49 C Alexandre Bolduc, #52 C Brett Hextall, #54 C Ethan Werek, #57 D Maxim Goncharov, #58 W Jordan Szwarz, #35 G Justin Pogge and #75 G Louis Domingue

Period-by-Period Summary

First Period
  • 1:30 in, Jordin Tootoo went to the penalty box for interference. Power play for Coyotes.
  • 2:40 in, Ryan Suter sent a long pass through the middle of the ice to Matt Halischuk. Halischuk's break-away was shut down by Keith Yandle, who poked the puck away.
  • 3:30 in, Tootoo's penalty was killed off. 
  • 4:32 in, Suter turned the puck over to Mikkel Boedker, where he went one on one with Rinne. Pekka stood big and stayed with Boedker. Rinne made the huge save and swinged momentum to the Predators.
  • 6:39 in, Halischuk was hit from behind by Rostislav Klesla along the Phoenix bench. Halischuk went to the locker room, but returned shortly after. Minor penalty called, power play Nashville.
  • 8:39 in, Klesla's penalty was killed off. It should have been a major though.
  • 10:00 in, Paul Gaustad and Kyle Chipchura dropped the gloves immediately after the face-off. The fight wasn't very good.
  • 14:25 in, Shane Doan scores a goal off the stick of Roman Josi's stick and Rinne's blocker into the back of the net. 1-0 Coyotes.
  • 15:55 in, Gabriel Bourque went to the penalty box for slashing Michal Roszival's stick.
  • 17:11 in, Martin Hanzal went to the penalty box for interference. The game went to 4-on-4 hockey.
  • 17:55 in, Bourque's penalty was killed off. Short power play for Nashville.
  • 19:11 in, Hazal's penalty was killed off fairly easily. The game went to even strength hockey.
  • 19:59 in, Mike Smith kept Bourque, Hornqvist and Gill's shot out of the net. There was a lot of traffic in front and a couple of take downs. 
  • The first period ended with Phoenix leading, 1-0. They also led in shots, 9-5.

Second Period
  • The first two minutes were controlled by the Predators. The Coyotes defense pairings weren't able to get off the ice until 1:58 in.
  • 4:30 in, Patric Hornqvist's shot on a 2-on-1, rang off the post.
  • 4:46 in, Hornqvist had another chance on the same shift to score. This time, Hornqvist had Smith down and out in front of the net, but shot the puck over the net.
  • 7:33 in, Hornqvist received a cross-slot pass from Bourque, but deflected the shot just wide. He went to the bench very frustrated.
  • 18:07 in, Suter's shot from the blue line was gloved down by Smith, easily.
  • 18:30 in, great passing by the Predators allowed Brandon Yip to create a scoring chance. Yip's back-hand hit off the right shoulder of Smith. It wasn't stopped by much.
  • The second period ended with the Coyotes still up 1-0. They also led in shots through two periods, 19-15.

Third Period
  • 6:06 in, Martin Erat went one-on-one with a Phoenix defender entering the zone. Erat's shot was deflected into the glove of Mike Smith.
  • 7:30 in, Pekka Rinne made a great extension save on Martin Hanzal's shot from the top of the slot. The puck was stopped by Rinne's skate.
  • 9:25 in, Mike Smith made an incredible save on Colin Wilson, alone to the left of him. Brandon Yip picked up the rebound, but couldn't get much on the shot.
  • 11:34 in, Derek Morris was sent to the penalty box for delay of game. There was no deflection by Legwand. Power play Nashville.
  • 12:48 in, Martin Erat and Patric Hornqvist stuffed the puck into the back of the net, but the referee waved it off. The referees reviewed it in Toronto. They said that they were in the act of blowing the whistle. 
  • 13:34 in, Morris' penalty was killed off.
  • 13:42 in, Hornqvist had a chance to stuff the puck in, but Smith was strong on the ice.
  • 15:44 in, Hornqvist broke away from the defense, but shot just wide again.
  • 16:41 in, Hornqvist was pushed into Smith and jumped on by the Coyotes. After a few comments made, the game was back to normal.
  • 19:04 in, Rinne went to the bench for the extra attacker.
  • 19:15 in, Barry Trotz called a time out to set up a huge play.
  • The game ended with the Coyotes winning the game, 1-0. Nashville won in shots, 25-24.

Game 4: Phoenix Coyotes Players to Watch Name G A +/- TOI #17 Radim Vrbata 0 0 0 17:31 #13 Ray Whitney 0 0 0 16:53 #19 Shane Doan 1 0 +1 20:35 Scoring Summary

Shane Doan - Boedker at 14:25 in the 1st

My Three Stars of the Game

1. Mike Smith: Shutout, 25 Saves
2. Shane Doan: Game Winning Goal
3. Pekka Rinne: Stopped 23 of 24 Shots Game Highlights
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