NHL Game Summary - St. Louis at Phoenix
(Friday, October 10th)
Final Score: Phoenix 2, St. Louis 1 (OT)
Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - David Tanabe flipped home a backhander from the left face-off circle for the game-winner with just 22 seconds remaining in overtime, as the Phoenix Coyotes downed the St. Louis Blues, 2-1, in the season-opener for both teams at America West Arena.
Daymond Langkow also scored for the Coyotes, who moved to 11-10-4 in season- openers as a franchise, including their days as the Winnipeg Jets.
Both goaltenders looked to be in mid-season form, as the Coyotes' Sean Burke turned away 23 shots from St. Louis and the Blues' Chris Osgood stopped 19 of 21 shots.
Keith Tkachuk scored for the Blues, who, despite the strong effort, remain winless in their last seven season openers, the longest such streak in the NHL.
St. Louis' Landon Wilson was called for a penalty late in the third period, giving the Coyotes a power-play opportunity in the waning minutes of regulation. However, Phoenix couldn't convert.
Pavol Demitra had the best chance for the Blues late in overtime, but Burke turned aside both his first shot from the slot, as well as his attempt to slap the rebound home.
With less than 30 seconds to go, Osgood stopped a flurry of shots, but St. Louis couldn't clear the zone. Tanabe gathered in a loose puck, swept toward the left face off circle, and got enough on a backhand shot to get it by Osgood. Krystofer Kolanos stood in front of the net, running interference on the netminder, helping the puck find daylight. Brian Savage and Cale Hulse were credited with the assists.
Phoenix found the scoreboard first, when Langkow tallied on the power play 8:43 into the game. Shane Doan ripped a slap shot with Langkow crossing in front of the net from left to right, and Langkow redirected the shot past Osgood for the goal.
The Blues tied the game at one apiece with less than five minutes left in the second period. Demitra snuck down low with the puck on the power play, and his shot ricocheted off the crossbar. Tkachuk, near the crease on the other side of the net, swatted it out of midair and into the net.
The referees reviewed the play and ruled it a St. Louis goal, finding that Tkachuk did not hit the puck with a high-stick.
St. Louis signed defensemen Trevor Byrne and Aaron McKenzie and forward Colin Hemingway, and assigned them to Worcester of the AHL...Phoenix center Chris Gratton had two penalties for four minutes, leading all players in penalties and penalty minutes...St. Louis captain Al MacInnis earned the second assist on Tkachuk's power play goal and Ladislav Nagy got the second assist on Langkow's tally...The Blues, despite their recent stretch of futility, have fared pretty well in openers and are 18-12-7 all-time in their first game of the year...The Blues led last year's season series, 2-1-1...St. Louis winger Scott Mellanby did not play because of a rib injury and Blues' forward Dallas Drake missed the game with facial bruises.
10/11 01:27:33 ET