Bruins win 17th straight over Coyotes 2-1
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Linus Ullmark stopped 30 shots, David Pastrnak had two assists and the Boston Bruins stretched their winning streak over the Arizona Coyotes to 17 straight games with a 2-1 win Friday night.
Erik Haula and Charlie McAvoy each had goals to help Boston bounce back from blowing a two-goal lead in a loss to Colorado.
“We had some sustained pressure in the O-zone,” Haula said. “Not necessarily as hard as we would like to be in the first period. We got better as the game went on. Ultimately, we did enough to get the two points.”
Arizona was much better after falling apart late in lopsided losses to Pittsburgh and the New York Rangers.
Scott Wedgewood was sharp in second start in 12 games, finishing with 36 saves. Nick Schmaltz led Arizona’s bounce back from Boston’s first goal, scoring late in the first period.
The Coyotes missed on several scoring opportunities, particularly late, and still haven’t Boston since 2010 in the Czech Republic. They’ve lost four straight overall.
“It’s tough to get good offense going against them and we did tonight,” Coyotes coach Andre Tourigny said. “It’s something to be proud of, but we have nothing to show for it.”
Boston blew a 3-1 lead in its last game, losing 4-3 in overtime to the Avalanche on Wednesday after giving up a goal with 36 seconds left in regulation.
The Bruins got out to another early lead when a puck caromed off Coyotes defenseman Anton Stralman right to Pastrnak in the left circle. Pasternak quickly flipped it to Haula, who beat Wedgewood from the slot.
Schmaltz tied it late in the first period, beating Ullmark stick side from the left circle after a deke by Shane Gostisbehere briefly froze Boston’s goalie.
“I knew they were going to over commit,” Gostibehere said. “I had a good shot and thought if I pump faked, other things would open. I didn’t see Nicky right away, but when I walked to the middle I saw him.”
McAvoy put Boston back up on power play late in the second period, scoring from the right circle on a shot Wedgewood couldn’t see through traffic.
Wedgewood made some tough saves when Boston went on consecutive power plays midway through the third period, then had a sprawling stop on a shot by Haula in the slot on a 4-on-4.
Ullmark was just as good in the final two minutes after Arizona pulled Wedgewood, making several tough saves in traffic.
“It’s a lot more fun winning games on a daily basis, feeling like I have the opportunity to win every night,” Ullmark said. “There’s no games where you feel out of it. The guys are going to go out there and play their utmost overall 60 minutes.”
Bruins center Brad Marchand was asked about Arizona possibly playing at Arizona State’s new 5,000-seat arena for a few years and got in a dig about the Coyotes’ attendance.
“The only way they get 5,000 fans at their games now is if they give 4,500 away for free so wouldn’t change much,” Marchand tweeted on Thursday.
The fans at Gila River Arena didn’t seem to mind or even know about Marchand’s dig. Then again, most of them were wearing Bruins gear.
Schmaltz briefly went to the penalty box for a double-minor high-sticking penalty on Anton Blidh. A video review showed McAvoy hit Blidh with his stick, not Schmaltz. … McAvoy and Arizona’s Antoine Roussel were sent to the penalty box for fighting early in the third period. Roussel ended the fight with a hard right to McAvoy’s head, but was hit with a double-minor penalty for roughing. … Boston D Matt Grzelcyk returned after missing two games with an upper-body injury. … … Bruins G Tuukka Rask is day-to-day with a lower-body injury.
Boston: Plays at Dallas on Sunday.
Arizona: Hosts Buffalo Saturday.
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