Season's over for Chicago Blackhawks

Phoenix Coyotes take game six, move on to next round of the playoffs

April 24, 2012

The Associated Press and City Room

AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh
A Chicago Blackhawks fan reacts as he watches his team play against the Phoenix Coyotes during the third period of Game 6 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup first-round playoff series in Chicago, Monday, April 23, 2012. The Coyotes won 4-0.

Mike Smith made 39 saves and the Phoenix Coyotes scored three times in the final period to beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-0 on Monday night and capture their opening-round series in six games.

Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored in the second and Gilbert Brule, Antoine Vermette and Kyle Chipchura had goals in the third as the Coyotes won a first-round series for the first time since moving to Phoenix for the 1996-97 season. It is the first series triumph for the franchise since 1987 when it was still the Winnipeg Jets.

The Coyotes won all three games at the United Center. Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said not winning at home was "brutal."

"The crowd was in it, we had everything we were looking for except the goal. But it's a special place to play and you're disappointed you've got nothing to show for it at the end of the day," Quenneville said.

Quenneville said the turning point in the series was the hit that sent the Blackhawks' Marian Hossa off the ice on a stretcher. He said Hossa is recovering at home, but hasn't been feeling very well.

Monday night's game was the first in the series not to be decided in overtime. The Coyotes now move on to play Nashville in the conference semifinals.