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Nick Bjugstad’s hat-trick, Connor Ingram’s shutout power Coyotes’ 6-0 win over Wild

© Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Bjugstad scores a hat-trick and Connor Ingram records a 38-save shutout for the Arizona Coyotes as they trounced the Minnesota Wild 6-0 on Saturday night at Xcel Energy Center.

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Bjugstad, Alex Kerfoot and Clayton Keller combined for six goals in the blowout victory for the Coyotes (21-18-2), bouncing back from a 6-2 loss to the Calgary Flames on Jan. 11. Sean Durzi and Jason Zucker had two assists each.

Kirill Kaprizov and Filip Gustavsson were both activated from Injured Reserve prior to the game. Kaprizov had five shots in his return for the Wild (17-20-5), missing the previous seven games. They have lost four-straight.

Receiving a pass from the slot by Keller, Kerfoot wired a one-timer past Gustavsson for Arizona 5:07 into the contest, leading 1-0. Arizona hadn’t led in a first period during their last five-game homestand coming into this matchup.

After picking up a turnover by Pat Maroon, Michael Kesselring kept the puck in the Coyotes’ offensive zone, took a few strides and whipped the puck to Nick Bjugstad who would bury a snapshot, making it 2-0 with 8:13 left in the first period.

Bjugstad, a former center for the Wild and Blaine, Minnesota native, continued to pour it on by tapping in a setup by Lawson Crouse and increasing Arizona’s advantage to 3-0.

Even though they were up early, the Coyotes displayed the tenacity and urgency to keep the momentum rolling.

Keller scored 1:51 into the second period, exploding out from behind Minnesota’s goal and firing a shot through a screen in front of Gustavsson, adding to the Coyotes lead, 4-0.

Completing a hat-trick, Bjugstad sniped short-side, over the right shoulder of Gustavsson. Ex Wild forward Zucker assisted on the second and third goals by Bjugstad for Arizona.

Down 5-0, Wild head coach John Hynes made a goaltending switch, yanking Gustavsson and replacing him with Marc-André Fleury. Gustavsson gave up five goals on 18 shots, and Fleury stopped 14-of-15 shots he faced in relief.

Maroon thought he buried a goal off of a rebound, but he pushed Josh Brown into Ingram. After discussing with the rest of the coaching staff, Coyotes head coach André Tourigny challenged. A couple minutes later, the officials waived off the tally for goalie interference.

While the scoreboard was lopsided, Minnesota buzzed in the second half of the game with high quality scoring chances, ending up outshooting Arizona 38-28.

Bursting on a breakaway all alone, Keller caught Fleury sprawled out before finishing his 150th goal of his career. His second of the night also tied Crouse for the team lead with 17 this season.

Next Games

Coyotes: Away vs. Calgary Flames (19-18-5) on Tuesday at 7 p.m. MST

Flames: Home vs. New York Islanders (19-12-10) on Monday at 4 p.m. MST

Coyotes D Matt Dumba ‘super excited’ about coming back to Minnesota

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Alec Cipollini is a reporter of the Arizona Coyotes and Cardinals for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on his X account @AlecCipollini

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