Posted February 22, 2012 on AP on Fox
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Radim Vrbata scored his second goal late in regulation and the Phoenix Coyotes rallied from a three-goal deficit to beat the Los Angeles Kings 5-4 in a shootout Tuesday night. Shane Doan also had two goals and Martin Hanzal matched his career high with three assists to extend Phoenix's point streak to nine games. Vrbata scored on a power play with 2:27 left after Kings winger Kyle Clifford received a game misconduct for a head shot on Coyotes center Gilbert Brule. Ray Whitney and Mikkel Boedker scored for Phoenix in the shootout, which ended when Los Angeles defenseman Jack Johnson missed wide right. Drew Doughty, Andrei Loktionov and Dustin Brown scored in the first period, and Justin Williams added his 12th goal in the second for the Kings. Fighting for playoff spots in the Western Conference, the Coyotes and Kings slugged it out last Thursday night in Los Angeles. The game featured three fights in the first period and 62 penalty minutes overall. Goalie Mike Smith got involved in one scrum and Doan also made a rare appearance on the fight card, going toe-to-toe with Brown, his captain counterpart. Phoenix beat Los Angeles 1-0 on Vrbata's power-play goal and Smith's 28 saves. The rematch was even bigger for the Kings. While Phoenix was bounding up the standings, Los Angeles had taken a tumble, losing six of its previous eight games. The Kings have struggled to find the net, failing to score two goals six times -- all losses -- and followed the shutout against the Coyotes with another 1-0 loss against Calgary. This time, the fighting was down and the scoring up. The Kings had the jump at the start, getting a goal from Doughty about 6 minutes in and two more from Loktionov and Brown just over two minutes apart. The Coyotes had just five shots on goal in the period and Smith gave up as many goals as he had the previous five games combined. Phoenix snapped out of its quickly in the second, getting a power-play goal from Vrbata 50 seconds in, another by Doan -- both on feeds from Hanzal -- four minutes later. Los Angeles answered on Williams' one-timer on a power play, but Doan scored his second of the game on a rebound late in the period to cut the Kings' lead to 4-3. Vrbata tied it late in the third with a nifty carry-and-spin move, giving him 30 goals on the season. Notes: The Kings are 20-4-6 when scoring first. ... The first period featured no penalties, the second five. ... Los Angeles had killed 23 of 24 penalties before Phoenix converted 3 of 7. ... Phoenix has won six straight home games.
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