Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Coyotes Snap Road Winless Streak with 4-1 Victory over Flames

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Coyotes Snap Road Winless Streak with 4-1 Victory over Flames

Article excerpt

Coyotes down Flames in Wideman's return

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CALGARY - Calgary defenceman Dennis Wideman was just happy to be back in the Flames lineup Friday night.

Brad Richardson scored twice as the Arizona Coyotes beat the Flames 4-1 in Wideman's return after an independent arbitrator reduced his 20-game suspension for physically abusing an official down to 10 games earlier in the day.

"I'm just excited to get back and get playing and help the Flames win some games here," said Wideman, who expressed his appreciation to the fans, Flames staff and NHLPA for standing by him. "I know that this was pretty chaotic the last couple weeks and a bit of a distraction and I just want to thank them for all the support."

On Friday morning, Neutral Discipline Arbitrator James Oldham announced Wideman's suspension would be reduced, ruling that the Calgary defenceman did not intend to injure linesman Don Henderson. That paved the way for him to return to the lineup. He had already sat out 19 games.

"First and foremost, I just want to wish Donnie Henderson a speedy recovery. I realize that he's still working through his injuries and trying to make his way back and I hope to see him back out on the ice as soon as possible," said Wideman. "As far as the ruling goes, I'm happy it was reduced to 10 games. I still maintain that it was completely accidental and I had no intent on hitting Donnie at all."

Captain Mark Giordano said it's good to have the veteran back on the blue line.

"It was frustrating but you can't go back. At the end of the day, right now, just happy as a teammate and a friend that it's over with for him and we can move on from that," he said.

Tied 1-1 headed to the third and with Arizona on a power play, Antoine Vermette snuck out of the corner with an unaware Wideman nearby, and from the side of the net, steered in a perfect cross-ice pass from Martin Hanzal. …

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