GLENDALE, Ariz. — Conor Garland scored twice, Nick Schmaltz and Niklas Hjalmarsson each had a goal and the Arizona Coyotes beat the Vegas Golden Knights 4-1 Thursday night for their first win of the season.
The Coyotes (1-2-0) broke out of a scoring slump after managing just one goal in the first two games. Darcy Kuemper made 36 saves in his third consecutive start to open the season, and new centre Carl Soderberg added two assists.
Shea Theodore scored for the Golden Knights, who have dropped two straight after winning their first two games. Vegas lost for the first time in Arizona after winning the first four meetings at Gila River Arena.
Hayton Gets on the Statsheet
Arizona rookie Barrett Hayton, the fifth overall pick in the 2018 draft, assisted on Schmaltz’s goal in his NHL debut. The 19-year-old Hayton held off a defender with one arm while muscling a pass to Christian Dvorak on the wing. Dvorak got the primary assist when Schmaltz scored with 39 seconds left in the first period.
Garland backhanded the puck off the skate of Vegas defender Nicolas Hague at the 8-minute mark of the first, the first goal for Arizona since Derek Stepan’s second-period goal in the season opener at Anaheim on Oct. 3.
Theodore answered for the Golden Knights with 5 seconds left in the first. His shot eluded Kuemper, who had to deal with Vegas forward Max Pacioretty in his line of sight as the shot zipped toward the net.
The Coyotes challenged for goaltender interference, but the goal was upheld.
Out of a penalty kill, Garland scored on a solo rush up the ice, beating goalie Malcolm Subban with a backhand for a 3-1 Coyotes lead. Subban, who finished with 12 saves, was replaced in net by Marc-Andre Fleury to start the second period.
Hjalmarsson Ends Scoring Drought
Hjalmarsson scored off a faceoff at 18:28 of the second, his long slap shot getting past Fleury for his first goal with the Coyotes. Hjalmarsson, a defenceman, didn’t score last season, his second with Arizona.
Fleury made 13 saves. The Golden Knights went 0 for 4 on power plays.
NOTES: Coyotes forward Lawson Crouse missed the game with an upper body injury. D Kyle Capobianco, yet to make his season debut, was also scratched. … G Antti Raanta, who hasn’t played in a game since last Nov. 27 because of a long-term lower body injury, is expected to make his season debut for Arizona on Saturday at Colorado. … Phil Kessel moved into seventh place on the NHL’s consecutive games played list at 776. … D Jimmy Schuldt and C Nicolas Roy were scratched for the Golden Knights and have yet to play in a game this season.
Vegas hosts the Calgary Flames on Saturday.
Arizona plays at Colorado on Saturday.
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Jose M. Romero, The Associated Press