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Cooley scores OT winner as Coyotes edge Canucks

Dylan Guenther Vladislav Kolyachonok Arizona Coyotes Dylan Guenther Vladislav Kolyachonok - The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER — Quinn Hughes doesn't think his Vancouver Canucks should have had to rally in the third period Wednesday night.

The team shouldn't have fallen two goals behind the Arizona Coyotes in the first place, he said.

The Canucks forced an adventure-packed overtime with a pair of late goals, but had to settle for a single point when Logan Cooley scored to give the Coyotes a 4-3 victory.

“Obviously, good for us to push back," Hughes said. "But I don't think it's really a team that's better than us, so we probably shouldn't be in that position."

Arizona has struggled for much of the season and sits well outside of the playoff picture.

Vancouver remains atop the Pacific Division but saw its lead over the Oilers shrink to four points. Edmonton has two games in hand and will host the Canucks on Saturday.

“Obviously, the way we played (Wednesday) wasn’t playoff hockey and wasn’t good enough," said Canucks forward Elias Lindholm.

"And obviously we have three more games to put ourselves in a good spot and feel good about our game and get some confidence. Obviously we’re going to play some good teams. So it’s going to be a big stretch for us here.”

The Coyotes were coming off a 5-0 loss to the Kraken in Seattle on Tuesday and dealing with a raft of off-ice distractions.

The team made headlines earlier Wednesday when reports emerged that the NHL is making contingency plans in case the team is moved to Salt Lake City this summer.

The NHL has been working on two schedule drafts for next season in case the team is in Arizona or playing under a different name in Utah, according to a person familiar with the planning. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no decisions have been made.

“Honestly, we just need to stick together as a group and that's what we did," Cooley said. "There was no quit in our team all year, whether that was when we were going through that losing streak, the arena news, it's a pretty special group we have in there and it's fun to compete out there and battle with those guys.”

This is the second time this season the Coyotes have dealt with relocation rumours, coach Andre Tourigny noted.

Last time around, the team followed the news with a 14-game losing streak, he said.

"It's not just about results for us, it's about the way we fought, the way we got engaged emotionally in that game, the way we fought for each other," the coach said.

"I think we have a group of guys who love each other and a really good atmosphere in our room, so they fought for each other tonight. It's on the leadership, it's on our players and the pride they showed tonight. I'm really proud of them.”

Dylan Guenther -- who turned 21 on Wednesday -- had a goal and three assists for Arizona (34-40-5), while Vladislav Kolyachonok put up one of each. Josh Brown also scored for the visitors.

Elias Pettersson, Conor Garland and J.T. Miller each had a goal for the Canucks (48-22-9), and Hughes contributed three assists.

Arturs Silovs made 14 saves for Vancouver and Connor Ingram stopped 23 of 26 shots for Arizona.

Tourigny said he was impressed by his team's performance.

"I think they battled, they fought," he said. "On the bench, the attitude, the desire to win, pushing each other and the focus, it was really good. That's fun to see our team play like that."

Arizona went on the power play 1:45 into overtime after Brock Boeser was called for tripping Guenther.

Vancouver withstood the extra pressure, blocking shots and keeping the Coyotes to the outside.

Filip Hronek picked off a pass and started down the ice on a breakaway, only to be hooked from behind by Nick Schmaltz. The officials awarded the Canucks defenceman a penalty shot and Hronek waltzed in, stuttered and put a shot on Ingram's glove from the side of the net.

Moments after the penalty ended, Guenther sent a shot to the net and Cooley batted it in for his 19th of the season.

After falling behind 3-1 in the third period, the Canucks made a late rally and forced overtime with a power-play goal 16:18 into the third period.

With Arizona's Michael Kesselring in the box for interference, Hughes sliced a pass to Pettersson and the Swedish centre blasted a one-timer in for his 34th goal of the season.

Vancouver went 1-for-4 with the man advantage Wednesday, while Arizona was 0-for-5.


Kolyachonok was a late addition for Arizona, sliding in for Maksymilian Szuber, who was sent down to the AHL's Tucson Roadrunners earlier Wednesday.

Lindholm returned to Vancouver's lineup after missing seven games with a wrist injury. He skated on the third line with Phillip Di Giuseppe and Ilya Mikheyev.


Coyotes: Continue a five-game road swing against the Oilers on Friday.

Canucks: Face the Oilers in Edmonton on Saturday.

— With files from The Associated Press.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 10, 2024.