If you did not get a chance to see Game 6 of the Coyote/Red Wings series, you really missed out. The Black Aces had the day off and watched the game at different locations but John Krouse, Mike Ermatinger, Dave MacLean (video/pro scout for the Coyotes) and I watched in the locker room.
In the first ten minutes of the game, the Coyotes took three minor penalties and then a fourth to put them down five-on-three. Ilya Bryzgalov was good and the penalty killing was great. We not only survived the onslaught from Detroit but managed a shorthanded goal by great work from Martin Hanzel and Lauri Korpikoski. Detroit kept the pressure on and Bryzgalov stood tall, stopping everything he saw.
One of the areas the Coyotes wanted to get better at was the power play. They discussed it after Game 5 and knew that it had to get going. Mathieu Schneider and Robert Lang were inserted into the lineup for that exact reason and what a great move it turned out to be. Schneider scored his first goal of the playoffs and Lang assisted on a goal by Radim Vrbata to virtually put the game away in the 3rd period. We scored one more power-play goal on a great shot from former Rampage player Keith Yandle that was deflected by Taylor Pyatt.
The effort was awesome! The Coyotes fought and scratched the whole game and that is why they have had so much success this season. They have never given up, and they have played a great team game. Even without their captain and playing in a hostile environment, they were able to stave off elimination and force a Game 7.
Mikkel Boedker and Josh Tordjman made the trip to Detroit. They did not play but they witnessed what Coyotes hockey is all about - heart, team, attitude, work, and a willingness to put your body on the line every shift. What a great experience for these young players to witness.
We are all very excited about Game 7 on Tuesday night. It obviously will be crazy with the whiteout and the intensity of the situation… win you go on… lose you go home….Let's all hope for another great effort from the Coyotes!