The Phoenix Coyotes scored three times on the power play Wednesday night, providing all the offense they needed en route to a 3-2 win over the Detroit Red Wings in Game One of their Western Conference Quarterfinal matchup.
Phoenix scored on three of their four total power plays. The fourth was shortened by the Coyotes taking a penalty of their own.
The Red Wings opened the scoring with 7:43 left in the first period when Tomas Holmstrom wristed a shot from the top of the left faceoff circle over the glove of Phoenix netminder Ilya Bryzgalov, who seemingly whiffed on the attempted save.
Detroit regained the lead with a power play goal of their own with 3:33 remaining in the period. Nicklas Lidstrom sent a slap shot from the blue line between four players’ legs on its way past Bryzgalov.
Wojtek Wolski one-timed a chance from the right faceoff circle past Howard at 6:15 of the second period for Phoenix’s second power play goal to tie the game.
Derek Morris scored just 2:19 into the third, putting the Coyotes in front. Matthew Lombardi won a faceoff in the left circle back to Morris at the blue line. Shane Doan knocked Darren Helm down away from the puck to give Morris a clear path to the top of the slot where he blasted a shot past Howard.
The Red Wings were unable to pull back even in the game’s closing minutes and the Coyotes held on to take a 1-0 lead in the series.
Howard made 32 saves on 35 Phoenix shots while Bryzgalov stopped 38 of 40 chances.
Game Two of the series will be Friday in Glendale.