Found April 20, 2012 on
Fox Sports Arizona:
CHICAGO Mikkel Boedker termed it more of a shove than a shot. Goalie Mike Smith called it "Coyote ugly." But on Thursday at the United Center, beauty came in the form of a second consecutive overtime winner.
After blowing a late lead for the third time in four games in this Western Conference quarterfinal series, the Coyotes scored just two minutes and 15 seconds into overtime to post a 3-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks and grab a commanding 3-1 lead in the series with Game 5 scheduled for Saturday in Glendale.
With Chicago defenseman Sean O'Donnell already caught too deep in the Phoenix zone, Boedker tipped the puck away from defenseman Nick Leddy in the neutral zone and raced in on a partial breakaway, beating goalie Corey Crawford between the legs for his second overtime winner in as many games.
"Your eyes get a little big when you see a bobbled puck and the D-man is pinching down on it," Boedker said. "It wasn't much of a move but they all count the same."
Boedker is the first player to score consecutive overtime goals in the postseason since Colorado's Joe Sakic did it against San Jose on Apr. 28 and May 1, 2004. That he was the one to deliver in both of these games is fitting for a team that has relied on depth all season to overcome a lack of star power. But it also came as a mild surprise for a player whose greatest issue has been his inability to finish.
"Every player wants to get points," coach Dave Tippett said. "Their friends all text them and everything is good. The one thing with Boeds -- we've had to stay on him and say you have an effect on the game even if you don't score, if you're doing things right.'"
Boedker has done all of those things. He's sound positionally, he's sound defensively, he makes good decisions with the puck, he works hard and he's as humble a player as you will find in this league. But when you're drafted eighth overall (2008), big things are expected.
"It doesn't happen overnight. With some guys you have to be a little more patient," Boedker said. "I've had some rough ups and downs this season and Tip and those guys have stayed with me."
Boedker has always had blazing speed an asset that was on display on Thursday's winning goal and all season long when he took shootout attempts. But he spent a lot of time after practice working with assistant John Anderson on finishing around the net.
He had 11 goals in 82 games, but general manager Don Maloney made it clear he wanted more, all but calling Boedker out earlier in the season.
"I don't think I was as bad as maybe it looked because I wasn't scoring," Boedker said. "But I knew they wanted more."
Boedker got an opportunity in Games 3 and 4 with wing Lauri Korpikoski out of the lineup due to an undisclosed injury. He made the most of that increased playing time on a line with Boyd Gordon and Taylor Pyatt.
"I was bugging Korpikoski," Tippett said, smiling. "He might have just lost his spot on that line."
The only other time the Coyotes have led a series 3-1 since moving to the Valley came in 1999 when they fell to St. Louis in seven games. Judging by the first four games of this series, closing out the Blackhawks will be equally difficult.
Thursday's extra session marked the first time since 1951 (Toronto-Montreal) that a playoff series has opened with four straight overtimes.
"It feels like we've played the fifth game," Tippett quipped.
But in a season where the Coyotes captured the franchise's first division title, no challenge appears too daunting. The club is resilient. The club is deep and, as Bodker showed on Thursday, the faces are interchangeable.
"You can go right through our lineup," captain Shane Doan said. "Everybody expects to contribute and score."
Phoenix is on the verge of its first playoff series win since moving to Arizona. But don't expect that reality to alter this group's demeanor.
"We're not going to change a thing," Doan said. "It's that same business approach that's made us successful and that's what you'll see on Saturday."
BEST OF MAXIM
CHICAGO -- Forward Raffi Torres has been suspended indefinitely, pending an in-person hearing on Friday, the NHLs Department of Player Safety announced Wednesday. The hearing, which had been planned for Wednesday, was deferred at the request of the player and the National Hockey League Players' Association.
The hearing will be convened at the NHL's New York office for a...
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Coyotes returned to the Valley on Friday afternoon in a rather favorable position, one that could see them make history Saturday night at Jobing.com Arena.
After winning two games in Chicago to take a 3-1 series lead in the Western Conference quarterfinals, the Coyotes have a chance to close out the Blackhawks in Game 5 and advance in the playoffs for the...
CHICAGO In three games of the Coyotes-Blackhawks first-round playoff series, weve had three overtimes, two-game tying goals in the final minute of play, 14 different goal scorers and 124 saves from Phoenix goalie Mike Smith on 132 shots.
Normally, those would be dominant storylines. In this series, theyre window dressing.
When the Blackhawks and Coyotes spoke to the media following...
This per Josh Rimer from XM Radio. Torres, a repeat offender, took an incredibly cheap shot last night at Marion Hossa, sending Hossa to the Hospital. The lack of NHL players have for one another right now is absolutely staggering. We aren't even halfway through the open round of the playoffs and already have surpassed last year's suspension number for the entire playoffs...
Mikkel Boedker scored at 13:15 of overtime as visiting Phoenix reclaimed
home-ice advantage and seized a 2-1 lead in its Western Conference
quarterfinal series against Chicago with a 3-2 victory Tuesday.Boedker scored on a
seemingly harmless shot from a sharp angle along the goal line that
snuck past Corey Crawford in the third straight overtime contest in the
The NHL has spoken, they have made an example out of Raffi Torres, they have thrown the book at him. The NHL has also set a precedence, the question is, will the NHL be consistent in their ruling?. While I think that Torres deserved at least a 5-10 suspension this suspension is almost to the point of being excessive. My first question is...
Yes, yes.... Raffi Torres is suspended indefinitely until his hearing on Friday which he and the NHLPA requested be delayed. Obviously, Torres, a repeat offender is lawyering up for his meeting.
@RoseTintedVisor called me out for not mentioning Bergenheim's penalties. No kidding. Gotta give you something to snap at me about.
Okay, here's some more. Jesse D. Eisenberg...
NHL slams Torres with huge punishment for Hossa hit.
The NHL finally made a decision that the majority of hockey fans will be pleased with. They've been criticized repeatedly for their action, or inaction, when it comes to handling player discipline. The most obvious was the blunder with Shea Weber, where the Nashville defenseman received a tiny $2,500 fine for smashing a player's head into the glass.
Naturally, fans feared...
Mikkel Boedker scored 13:15 into overtime, and the Phoenix Coyotes beat the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 on Tuesday night to take a 2-1 lead in their wild and physical opening-round Western Conference playoff series.
Game 4 is Thursday night at the United Center.
Boedker scored from the left side of the net, beating goalie Corey Crawford as the teams played their third straight overtime...
On Coach’s Corner tonight, the main topic was the Raffi Torres hit on Marian Hossa.
The Phoenix Coyotes have lost players to injuries and suspensions. They get off to slow starts, give up goals late in regulation. Nothing ever seems to be easy.
So how do they handle the adversity? Shrug their shoulders and grit their teeth.
Buoyed by a band-together resiliency that comes with having no real star players and an uncertain future in the desert, Phoenix has scrapped...
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. The Blackhawks scored a late, game-tying goal to force overtime. And then lost when Corey Crawford allowed a soft goal. Heard enough? So have I. Mikkel Boedker was credited with the game-winning … Continue reading →