Kipper's woes continue

STEVE MACFARLANE, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:07 AM ET

Getting their defencemen on the scoreboard has been a priority for the Phoenix Coyotes.

It took a mediocre performance by goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff to accommodate head coach Wayne Gretzky's wishes, as the Coyotes got a couple of key goals from their blueliners to beat the Calgary Flames 4-2 and hand the homeside their second straight loss last night at the Saddledome.

Not that the rest of the Flames were any better than their goaltender.

"We just weren't good enough in any area of the game to win tonight. It wasn't any one thing, it was pretty much everything," said captain Jarome Iginla. "We weren't sharp enough, didn't create enough, didn't play good enough defence."

He didn't mention the netminder, but after stealing a win in Los Angeles and giving the Flames hope in Anaheim the next night, Kiprusoff finally looked a little tired.

D-men Derek Morris and Ed Jovanovski both took advantage to earn their first goals -- and points -- of the season.

Morris made up for an embarrassing tumble as he wound up for a slapper in their recent clash in Phoenix. His trip led to Brandon Prust's first NHL goal during the 4-1 loss in the desert.

The former Flame didn't fall during his wind-up last night, as he charged down the right side on a shorthanded rush and zipped the under Kiprusoff's arm on the far side to tie the game 10:23 into the first period after Daymond Langkow opened the scoring with his third of the season 3:20 in.

A huge disappointment offensively this year, Jovanovski came through on the powerplay in the second period for the winner.

His slapshot from the blueline got under Kiprusoff's left pad and slid in.

"Any time you go through a stretch like that where you can't get anything, it weighs on you and it's frustrating. It's nice to get back on the board," said Jovanovski, who felt re-energized almost immediately.

"Even after I scored that goal I felt better as a player, instantly. I felt confident. I felt my feet moving a lot better. I was in the play physically.

"I'll take a fluky one."

Shane Doan and Steven Reinprecht also scored for the Coyotes.

Although the Flames managed to salvage the back-and-forth first period with a late goal from Dustin Boyd -- who was beside the post when linemate David Moss deflected Mark Giordano's point shot off Boyd's blade and in -- to square things at 2-2, they never seemed to gain any sort of momentum until the third period when they were down a pair.

They let what should have been the start of another winning streak instead become the beginning of a losing skid.

"We felt good getting the late goal in the first, it's a good momentum builder, but we couldn't seem to get anything going," said Moss, who was by far the team's best player on the night.

"I don't know if we got frustrated with no opportunities on the powerplays or not getting that many shots and chances."

Finally getting things going in the third period, the Flames tested Coyotes goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, but he was up to the challenge.


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