GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Shane Doan scored with 1:31 left, Mike Smith stopped 27 shots in his first home game in nearly four months and the Arizona Coyotes took advantage of two disallowed goals to beat the San Jose Sharks 3-1 Thursday night.
Smith returned from a 40-game absence due to a core muscle injury with a 44-save shutout Edmonton on Saturday and was sharp again in his first home game since Nov. 27.
He was helped by two San Jose goals that were waved off after official reviews, one for offside and the other for kicking the puck into the goal.
Doan scored his 25th goal of the season by squeezing a shot past Martin Jones from a tough angle. Michael Stone also scored and Antoine Vermette added an empty-net goal.
Tomas Hertl scored and Jones stopped 19 shots for the Sharks, who had won four straight road games.
The Sharks came into the desert following two of their two biggest home wins, beating Washington and Boston in a span of three days.
With time still left to catch
Trailing the Los Angeles Kings by five points in the Pacific Division entering Thursday, San Jose hit the road, where it has and NHL-best 25 wins.
The Sharks appeared to take the lead in the first period, when Dainius Zubrus converted Kevin Connaughton’s own-zone turnover into a goal. But Arizona issued a coach’s challenge and the goal was overturned for the Sharks were offside entering the zone.
Arizona’s Michael Stone scored a minute later on a shot from above the right circle that appeared to hit the stick of San Jose’s Matt Nieto. The Sharks challenged that one, sending a groan across Gila River Arena, but those were replaced by cheers when it was upheld.
Smith nearly got caught too far out of his crease early in the second period when he skated to near the top of the right circle to prevent a breakaway.
He couldn’t clear the zone, but the Coyotes covered up for him until he got back into the crease.
The Sharks appeared to score another goal later in the period and again had it overturned upon review. Chris Tierney scored it on a power play, but the officials determined he had made a “distinct kicking motion” to get the puck past Smith and overturned it.
San Jose finally got a goal that counted late in the second period, when Hertl punched in a rebound behind a sprawling Smith — without a review — to tie the game at 1-all.
Smith made a huge save with about 5 minutes left in regulation, stopping Joel Ward with his stick then his pad. Klas Dahlbeck helped his goalie out after that, dropping to a knee to block a shot as Smith worked his way back to his feet.
NOTES: The game was the first of three between the Coyotes and Sharks over the final 13 games of the season. ... Arizona D Oliver Ekman-Larsson missed his fourth straight game with an upper-body injury. ... Alex Tanguay, who had an assist on Stone’s goal, has three goals and four assists in six games since being traded to Arizona from Colorado. ... Arizona’s Max Domi and San Jose’s Marc-Edouard Vlasic fought early in the second period and Vlasic checked Domi’s face into the boards. Domi was given an additionl cross-checking penalty, setting up the power play that led Tierney’s disallowed goal.