Coyotes go for first home win vs. Hurricanes
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Coyotes remain in search of their first home victory, but they are getting closer.
The Coyotes put a scare into Buffalo in a 5-4 loss Thursday by scoring three goals in the final eight minutes, including one with 52 seconds remaining before falling short at home.
Next up for the Coyotes (1-12-1) is the visiting Carolina Hurricanes, who have played better on the road than at home this season.
The Hurricanes (4-5-2) have three road victories. Arizona played nine of its first 14 on the road, its lone victory coming in a 4-3 overtime decision in Philadelphia on Monday.
Carolina shot well enough -- or at least often enough -- to make a good run at another two points Thursday, peppering Colorado goaltender Semyon Varlamov with 60 shots in a 5-3 loss at Denver.
Victor Rask scored in the first minute of the game, but the Hurricanes could not hold off the Avalanche despite their offensive firepower for their third straight loss. They have lost five of six to drop into last place in the Metropolitan Division.
Arizona, meanwhile, was victimized by several odd-man rushes in the loss to Buffalo in the return of goaltender Antti Raanta, who missed the previous nine games with a lower-body injury.
"It's great to have Raanta back," said center Max Domi, who assisted on a goal in the first period.
"But it doesn't matter what goalie you have back there, if you have a brick wall back there, you give them that many two-on-ones the puck is going to end up in the back of your net. We left him hanging out to dry."
Domi's assist gave him 100 points in 154 games, the fastest player in franchise history to hit triple-digits. Center Peter Mueller did it in 187 games.
"There are about four or five individuals that have to understand what it takes to win," Coyotes coach Rick Tocchet said. "It's my job to get these guys to understand that and obviously I haven't done a good enough job."
Center Clayton Keller leads Arizona with nine goals and 15 points. No other player has more than three goals. Domi has one goal and nine assists.
Hurricanes left wing Jeff Skinner leads the team with seven goals and is tied with right wing Justin Williams for the scoring lead with nine points. Skinner led the team with 37 goals last year.
Williams, 36, in the first year of his second stop with Carolina after an 8 1/2-year absence, had 24 goals last season and averaged 19 1/2 goals over the last six seasons.
Second-year right wing Sebastian Aho, who had 24 goals and 15 assists last season, has no goals and six assists. He did not score his first goal last season until his 14th game, when he had two. Aho led the Hurricanes with 17 power play goals and had four game-winning goals while finishing with 49 points, fifth among NHL rookies.
"I keep telling him to make plays," 'Canes assistant coach Rod Brind'Amour told the Raleigh (N.C.) News & Observer. "He's a playmaker first, and you don't want to change his game. Keep playing his game, and it will turn.
"The worst you can do is all of a sudden starting piling on and like, 'Hey, you've got to score.' It's more, 'Relax, play your game.' The effort's there."
Carolina defenseman Brett Pesce was to miss his second straight game Saturday after being diagnosed with a concussion when he was struck by a puck in practice Tuesday. He was kept home for the two-game trip. Pesce and Jacob Slavin have been the team's best pairing in the early season.
Updated November 3, 2017