Coyotes sweep season series against Canadiens
Defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson led Arizona with 3 points
The Arizona Coyotes lost their backup goalie before warmups even started, leaving a club player as the only backup to Louis Domingue.
Nathan Schoenfeld never got in the game, but the Coyotes poured in so many goals he may have stood half a chance.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Martin Hanzal each had a goal and two assists, helping the Coyotes roll over Montreal 6-2 Monday night to complete a season sweep over the Canadiens for the first time in 36 seasons as a franchise.
"The way we played tonight, I though he [Schoenfeld] would have made it OK," said Domingue, who stopped 17 shots with no real backup behind him.
Instead of playing tentatively with no real backup goalie, the Coyotes were aggressive, sending a flurry of shots at Montreal goalie Mike Condon.
Arizona capitalized on most of those chances, matching the previous three games combined with a season high in goals. The Coyotes had 13 different players notch a point and six different goal scorers.
Hanzal scored his third goal in four games and Anthony Duclair added a goal in the first period. Brad Richardson, Kevin Connauton and Ekman-Larsson scored in the second, with Antoine Vermette capping the scoring burst with a goal in the third.
Despite the scoring output, the Coyotes awarded their player-of-the-game championship belt to Schoenfeld, a 31-year-old banker who skates with the team during the off-season.
"It was fun to see a guy sit in there after the game in his equipment and take it all in," Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said.
Not for the Canadiens.
Habs fall continues
Their spiraling season took another downward twist with a shaky performance in their own end and another struggle by a goalie.
Brendan Gallagher and Dale Weise scored for Montreal, which has lost 11 of 15.
"As long as we don't make good reads defensively and we don't check well, we don't have a chance to win," Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said.
The Canadiens have been trying to get consistent play at goalie and gain some footing in the Eastern Conference race since reigning league MVP Carey Price went down with a knee injury three months ago.
Ben Scrivens won three straight starts before being pulled after giving up three goals on eight shots in a loss to Buffalo on Friday.
Condon was back between the pipes against the Coyotes and gave up a goal in the opening 5 minutes, when Hanzal redirected a point shot by Michael Stone.
Duclair scored on a power play late in the first period, one-timing a pass from Hanzal after he punched a loose puck near the crease back to the right circle.
Richardson scored midway through the second period on a 4-on-4, cutting to the middle and wrapping a shot around Condon.
Ekman-Larsson, after two assists, gave the Coyotes a 4-2 lead by lifting a shot past Condon off the crossbar on a power play to match his career high with 44 points.
Connauton put Arizona up three goals late in the period, one-timing a cross-ice pass from Kyle Chipchura before falling to the ice.
Vermette kept the scoring going, backhanding a shot through Condon's pads to make it 6-2.
"We never played on our heels," Hanzal said. "We were moving forward the whole game."
They needed to after backup goalie Anders Lindback suffered an undisclosed off-ice injury before the game. With no time to call up anyone from the minors, Arizona had to turn to its designated emergency backup, Schoenfeld.
The son of former Coyotes coach and current New York Rangers assistant GM Jim Schoenfeld, he played club hockey at Arizona State and signed an Amateur Tryout Agreement before the game.