Thursday, September 28

Coyotes rally for 5 goals, send off fans with win in Gila River Arena finale

Friday night at Gila River Arena was loaded with mixed emotions against the backdrop of the final game in Glendale for the Arizona Coyotes. 

The overwhelming sense of sadness at leaving the building after 19 years, with the excitement of a temporary future at Arizona State University’s multipurpose arena. The Coyotes falling behind 4-0 in the first seven minutes of the game, then rallying to win 5-4 before one of the largest crowds of the season, with Shayne Gostisbehere breaking the tie just over halfway through the final period. And finally, the smattering of boos for President and CEO Xavier Gutierrez during an on-ice interview, juxtaposed with the applause and ovations for former longtime captain Shane Doan and former Coyote Jeremy Roenick. 

In the end, the Coyotes bid farewell to Gila River Arena with a memory for the ages on the last night of hockey in their home arena, a comeback victory when all seemed lost with a dreadful start to the game. 

The Coyotes scored five unanswered goals, but that was well after head coach André Tourigny called time out 2 minutes and 51 seconds into the game. After the Predators made it 4-0, starting goaltender Karel Vejmelka was pulled from the net and Harri Säteri replaced him. 

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