Mike Smith and Phoenix send Calgary and their fans home quiet after “Oh Canada!” Part Deux


Vermette put the game out of reach mid 3rd with a scrappy net buster goal as everyone crashed the net and just as you waited for the whistle to blow the ref pointed at the net and the crowd went crazy a third time, 3 – 0 Home team! It was a much needed goal by Vermette who has produced less than hoped for this season.

Raffi Torres (37) Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

On the final goal of the night Raffi Torres tossed an angled shot past the young rattled Flames net minder for the final 4 – 0 score sending a nice number of Flames fans to the exits and their charter buses. Raffi along with the sellout crowd heard a wonderful bit that drew a raucous ovation. Willie O’Ree, the first ever Black hockey player spoke at the break about his experiences and meeting Jackie Robinson. At the end he was asked who his favorite Coyotes player and he answered “Raffi Torres!” who is endured with fans for being the unsung and punished hero for his efforts leading us out of the first round last season. Nice to hear for a guy who has suffered greatly since the hit on Hossa. As an athlete you are wired a bit different. Your motor is at it’s red line at times. Emotions can force a fracture in judgments. I still contend his hit was a bit reactive and overblown by the way Hossa circled into the opposite direction of the puck. No one wants to hurt anyone. Pretty sure Raffi was very concerned he had been hurt worse than acceptable.

Nice win  for the Coyotes to go with a pair on the last road trip.These last two were against teams playing on the 2nd game of a back to back but we’ll take it.

Feb 17, 2012; Buffalo, NY, USA; Former NHL player Willie O

Now off to Western Canada to see exactly where this team is on a grander scale. Road trips define good teams from so so teams. Let’s GO Coyotes!