Sharks top Coyotes behind Couture's two goals

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Sharks top Coyotes behind Couture's two goals

March 26, 2011

BOX SCORE SHARKS VIDEONHLPAGE NHLSCOREBOARD
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Logan Couture made another big push in his bid for the Calder Trophy as the NHL's top rookie - at the Phoenix Coyotes' expense.Couture scored twice, reaching 30 goals to pad his San Jose rookie record, and added an assist in the Sharks' 4-1 victory over the Coyotes on Saturday night."We noticed (Phoenix goalie Ilya Bryzgalov) was not seeing the puck all that well, so just fired on net," Couture said. "(Bryzgalov) is one of the best in the league, but with the kind of night he was having, we wanted to put as many pucks on net as possible."Antti Niemi made 25 saves for his 31st victory of the season to help the Sharks open a four-point lead over the Coyotes for the top spot in the Pacific Division. Since Jan. 15, Niemi is 22-4-4.San Jose coach Todd McLellan recognized Couture's contribution, and his increasing value to the team."Logan has been a catalyst, and at times, carried this team," McLellan said. "He has given contributions from everywhere, from scoring, to winning faceoffs and penalty killing. For Logan to reach 30 goals is a great reward for a heck of a good season to this point."Joe Pavelski and Ryane Clowe also scored for San Jose, 6-1-3 in its last 10 games.Mikkel Boedker scored for the Coyotes. The loss was only Phoenix's second in its last 11 games.As strong as Bryzgalov has been recently in goal, he failed to handle several shots. Three of the four goals came off rebounds.Couture later picked his up his second of the game on a shot from the blue line that eluded Bryzgalov at 12:13 of the final period.For the third game in a row, Phoenix started slowly, managing only two shots on Niemi in the first 13 minutes, and just five in the opening period."I'm disappointed because we didn't leave everything on the ice," Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said. "I didn't see enough desperation in this game."The Coyotes paid for their slow start, and the sloppy play from Bryzgalov.Early in the opening period, Bryzgalov failed to cover Clowe's shot in front and Couture converted the loose puck just over 5 minutes into the game.The Coyotes quickly responded. Derek Morris' one-timer was deflected in front to Boedker, who slid the puck to the right of Niemi for his fourth of the season at 6:23 of the opening period.The Sharks regained the lead on another rebound left by Bryzgalov.Following a 2-on-1 with Joe Thornton and Pavelski, Bryzgalov couldn't handle Thornton's wrist shot and Pavelski backhanded in the rebound at 3:35 of the second period.Then, Clowe drove in his 24th of the season from a rebound in front when Bryzgalov failed to handle Devin Setoguchi's drive with just over 5 minutes remaining in the middle period."We weren't good enough in any area," said Coyotes captain Shane Doan. "They kind of controlled play and we have to be better than what we showed, and we know that."NOTES: The Coyotes scratched forwards Vernon Fiddler, Martin Hanzal and Lauri Korpikoski and recalled forward Ryan Hollweg from San Antonio. ... Morris' first-period assist was his 300th in the NHL.

Mike Brown responds to Tyronn Lue's opinion: 'It's cute'

Mike Brown responds to Tyronn Lue's opinion: 'It's cute'

Cavs head coach Tyronn Lue made headlines on Wednesday.

"The stuff (the Celtics are) running, it's harder to defend than Golden State's (offense) for me, as far as the actions and all the running around and all the guys who are making all the plays, so it's a totally different thing," Lue told reporters.

On Thursday, Warriors interim head coach Mike Brown responded.

"That's his opinion. It's cute," Brown told the media.

If the Cavs beat the Celtics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Thursday night, it will be Golden State vs Cleveland in the NBA Finals for the third straight year.

More to come...

New Hawks GM Travis Schlenk issues goodbye message to Warriors fans

New Hawks GM Travis Schlenk issues goodbye message to Warriors fans

On Thursday, the Hawks officially hired Travis Schlenk to be their new general manager.

Schlenk, who joined the Warriors prior to the 2004-05 season, delivered a message to Dub Nation on Thursday morning.

"The thing that I'm gonna remember most about my time in Golden State is the fan base," Schlenk declared on 95.7 The Game. "When I first got there in 2004 -- sitting behind the bench and the team was winning 32, 36 games every year -- and you'd look out and there would still be 18,000 people in the stands every game and they were into it.

"We always said, 'Man, if you could get a winner here this place would go crazy.' We got a small taste of that with the 'We Believe' Warriors 10 years ago. And now, to be where we are now, culminating with the championship parade ... people have asked me about that -- that was the most humbling thing I've ever been a part of. To be in that parade -- probably a million people out there cheering and screaming -- and people calling you out by name, and thanking you.

"They're genuine with their happiness ... the loyalness and the support that the people of the Bay Area gives the Warriors -- that's really special and I hope you guys never take that for granted there."

Schlenk is finishing up his fifth season as assistant GM with Golden State.

He revealed that he had to put in his resignation immediately because the NBA does not allow executives to work for two different franchises simultaneously.

Schlenk chose to start his duties with Atlanta immediately because as he put it -- "there's too much work I need to do here ... I gotta be here and get started."