St. Paul, MN – Ryan Suter tied the game with 55 seconds remaining in the third period and Mikko Koivu scored at the 2:43 mark of overtime to lift the surging Minnesota Wild to a 4-3 win over the fading Phoenix Coyotes at Xcel Energy Center.
Phoenix forward Antoine Vermette went off for cross-checking 35 seconds into the extra session. After the power play expired, Zach Parise dished the puck to Koivu at the bottom of the right circle and the Minnesota captain drove to the net and fired a shot past Coyotes goalie Jason LaBarbera.
Niklas Backstrom made 24 saves for the Wild, who notched their seventh straight win and moved into a tie with idle Vancouver for first place in the Northwest Division.
"Good teams find ways to win hockey games," Koivu said.
LaBarbera finished with 33 saves for a Phoenix team trending in the wrong direction. The Coyotes have dropped seven in a row.
Phoenix overcame a two-goal deficit and grabbed a 3-2 lead 1:52 into the third period.
Backstrom went down and stretched out to deny Shane Doan, but Michael Stone buried the rebound from the right circle.
With Backstrom on the bench for an extra attacker, Suter forced overtime by firing a wrister from the left circle past a screened LaBarbera.
"In the end, we didn't do enough to win," said Phoenix head coach Dave Tippett. "We took a poor penalty in overtime, we didn't have the desperation to block a shot in the last minute."
Torrey Mitchell opened the scoring for Minnesota at the 15:15 mark of the first period, and Matt Cullen scored into an open net 5:29 into the middle frame after picking off LaBarbera's clearing attempt.
The Coyotes tied things up with goals by Rob Klinkhammer and Boyd Gordon.
Klinkhammer put Phoenix on the board at 11:13 of the second period, then Gordon scored on a deflection 3:15 later.
The Wild last won seven in a row from Nov. 28-Dec. 10, 2011 ... The Coyotes have dropped six straight on the road (0-4-2).