It surely seemed like the Arizona Coyotes were solely working on their penalty kill(PK) in the summer. Their numbers on the PK are absolutely unbelievable. It is not like they scored three shorthanded goals all season long and someone is impressed by that. The Coyotes are on historical run right here.
Best Penalty Kill team in the league
If you look at the stats of NHL, Arizona Coyotes posses the best penalty kill in the league. They killed 91.4% of their penalties, which is the best in NHL. Second team on that list is San Jose. The Sharks are also impressive, they are 88.9% and third team in that matter are the Lightning with PK success of 85.7%.
Even if you are not a fan of the Coyotes, if you watched the highlights from their games. You may have noticed how many times they scored a shortie(short handed goal). Arizona has scored a shorthanded goal 10 times this season in the 18 games played. That is nearly every other game scoring a shorthanded goal. If your team plays Arizona and you do not allow a shorthanded that’s a plus. Some teams should pray to not to get a power play!
And it is not a joke, not even by close. Only one team in NHL history (counting since 1933/34 season) has scored 10 shorthanded goals in its first 18 games of the year, the Blues in 1975. Just two teams have scored more shorthanded goals throughout first 18 games of the campaign, it has been Philadelphia in 1973 and the Oilers in 1988. Those two clubs mentioned scored 11 shorthanded goals, all year.
What the Coyotes are doing is something you have not seen in the last 30 years! And Arizona is +5 on their penalty kill. Seven teams currently have less power play goals than Arizona has shorthanded goals. That is totally crazy, even more when you realize it is already second half of November! Flyers are +4 and Ducks are +3 on their PP, Coyotes are +5 on their PK. Just for comparison, the reigning Stanley Cup champions, Washington Capitals, gave up 19 goals on their PK and have not scored a shortie so far.
Impressive special teams highlight Arizona´s season
Just to mention, Coyotes have 9 power play goals and have not yet allowed a shorthanded goal. They have 10 goals scored and 5 goals given up on their penalty kill. Sharks, the second best PK team in NHL, have 7 goals allowed and 4 goals scored while being shorthanded.
Last night the magic work by the Yotes continued, this time against the Predators. The Preds had 5 power plays, no one shall be surprised with the fact that they did not score on those chances and they gave up a shorthanded goal. That goal was scored by Michael Grabner, a PK legend, who has 5 goals this campaign, four of them are shorthanded. Grabner became just 17th player in NHL history, who scored four shorties in his first 18 games of the season. Just two players have scored more shorthanded goals in that time span.
What´s next for the Coyotes? The Bruins are coming to Glendale on Saturday night. Boston scored 10 power play goals in its last five games. The Bruins are currently the second best power play team in the NHL. It would be very interesting to see if the Coyotes can work their magic once again!