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Wild tame Bryzgalov, Coyotes

Nov 29, 2007 - 4:48 AM
ST. PAUL, Minnesota (Ticker) -- Ilya Bryzgalov had to lose at some point.

Stephane Veilleux and Marian Gaborik scored second-period goals and rookie James Sheppard tallied in the third to lift the Minnesota Wild to a 3-1 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Wednesday.

Bryzgalov had won his previous four games with the Coyotes after being claimed off waivers from the defending Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks on November 17.

"You know, sometimes we can lose, too," Bryzgalov said.

Niklas Backstrom made 21 saves for Minnesota to improve to 5-0-0 lifetime against Phoenix.

Veilleux opened the scoring just over four minutes into the second period.

Sheppard took a shot from the slot that was stopped, but Veilleux corralled the rebound and fed the rookie, who then pushed the puck to Aaron Voros in the right faceoff circle.

Voros fired a shot that was blocked but fell in front of Veilleux on the doorstep. The Quebec native fired the shot past Bryzgalov at 4:02 to give the Wild a 1-0 lead.

"We're not going to score the finesse-type goals," Sheppard said. "We're going to score goals with hard work. So we got the puck there, I think about 20 different people hit the puck back and forth, but as soon as they hit it to us, we hit it right back. Eventually, one went in."

"I tried to find the puck at my feet and couldn't find it," Bryzgalov said.

Minnesota had a pair of strong chances six minutes later, with Gaborik getting two breakaway opportunities 30 seconds apart. Bryzgalov denied him both times but could not make the save on the Slovakian's third try at 17:29 of the second period.

After a turnover in the Wild's zone, Gaborik gained control of the puck and skated in on another breakaway. Gaborik made several dekes before slipping the puck past an off-balance Bryzgalov to give Minnesota a 2-0 advantage.

Radim Vrbata ended Backstrom's bid for his third shutout of the season just 27 seconds into the third period. The Czech redirected a shot from the blue line by defenseman Derek Morris underneath Backstrom's right arm and into the net.

"Against a team like this, they're so good defensively, we have to score dirty goals," Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky said. "We scored because we went to the net and got a tip. You're not going to score too many pretty goals against a team that is as well-coached as they are."

The Wild regained a two-goal cushion at 9:26 of the session, when Sheppard scored his second goal of the season.

Voros brought the puck out from behind the net but lost control as he tried to slip it past Bryzgalov. Sheppard gained control and lifted it over the netminder's left shoulder, giving Minnesota a 3-1 bulge.

"We needed to come out here and assert ourselves," Voros said. "Keep a tight game, but send pucks to the net. That's kind of what we were concentrating on this week in practice, just get pucks to the net no matter where from - what teams are kind of doing to us since we're such a tight team.

"We tried to use that philosophy today, and it paid off."

Wild coach Jacques Lemaire was pleased with his players' willingness to put their bodies on the line.

"(Phoenix) had control of the puck, but guys were in good position and trying to get in shooting lanes so they don't get shots on net," Lemaire said. "We did a good job there, very satisfying."

Bryzgalov, who made 25 saves, entered the contest with a 1.22 goals-against average and .954 save percentage since joining the Coyotes.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHOENIX 0 0 1 1
    MINNESOTA 0 2 1 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 4 (AARON VOROS, JAMES SHEPPARD) 4:02
    MIN - MARIAN GABORIK 9 (UNASSISTED) 17:29
    3RD PRD: PHO - RADIM VRBATA 9 (DEREK MORRIS, KEITH BALLARD) 0:27
    MIN - JAMES SHEPPARD 2 (AARON VOROS

    Nov 28 10:27 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 1
    MINNESOTA 3 10:34 LEFT, 3RD PRD

    Coyotes vs. WildNov 28 10:15 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 1
    MINNESOTA 2
    3RD PRD: PHO - RADIM VRBATA 9 (DEREK MORRIS, KEITH BALLARD) 0:27

    Coyotes vs. WildNov 28 9:55 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHOENIX 0 0 0
    MINNESOTA 0 2 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 4 (AARON VOROS, JAMES SHEPPARD) 4:02
    MIN - MARIAN GABORIK 9 (UNASSISTED) 17:29
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHO 9 6

    Nov 28 9:33 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 0
    MINNESOTA 2
    2ND PRD: MIN - MARIAN GABORIK 9 (UNASSISTED) 17:29

    Coyotes vs. WildNov 28 9:29 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 0
    MINNESOTA 1
    2ND PRD: MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 4 (AARON VOROS, JAMES SHEPPARD) 4:02

    Coyotes vs. WildNov 28 9:06 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHOENIX 0 0
    MINNESOTA 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHO 9 9
    MIN 8 8
    GOALIES: PHO - ILJA BRYZGALOV
    MIN - NIKLAS BACKSTROM

    Nov 28 8:42 PM
  • 5
    roots
    Flyboy Added 5 roots

    Coyotes vs. WildNov 24 9:41 PM