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Tkachuk Hits 30 In Coyotes Win

Robert Reichel knows the value of making a good first impression.

Reichel had a goal and an assist in his Phoenix debut as the Coyotes extended their unbeaten streak to five games with a 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday night.

"I was traded once before and had good success when I got to the new team, and the same thing happened tonight," said Reichel, who was acquired from the New York Islanders on Saturday. "I'll try and do the same thing the next few months."

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  • Keith Tkachuk reached the 30-goal plateau for the fourth consecutive season, Deron Quint had a goal and an assist, and Oleg Tverdovsky added the go-ahead goal for the Coyotes, who opened a seven-point lead over Anaheim for fourth place in the Western Conference.

    "We've gone through our difficult time it seems, and now we're starting to come out of it," said Coyotes coach Jim Schoenfeld.

    Luc Robitaille scored his team-leading 32nd goal for the Kings, who trail the Calgary Flames by five points for the conference's eighth and final playoff spot.

    Nikolai Khabibulin made 37 saves for Phoenix, which beat Los Angeles for the fifth time in six games. Khabibulin is 11-5-1 against the Kings.

    "It's just the way it goes," Khabibulin said of his success against Los Angeles. "Against some teams I've been terrible, so I don't know why, too."

    Tkachuk and Reichel combined to give Phoenix a 1-0 lead at 7:52 of the first period. Tkachuk skated down the right side, passed to Reichel behind the net, then took the return pass to the right of the crease and bounced a shot off Jamie Storr's left leg for his 30th goal.

    Tkachuk has scored 30 goals in five of his seven seasons, leaving him three seasons shy of Dale Hawerchuk's franchise record.

    "That's nice but it would be better not to lose in the first round (of the playoffs)," Tkachuk said. "He (Reichel) made some plays for us tonighand we need a guy like that."

    Robitaille answered 24 seconds later when he beat Khabibulin from the left faceoff circle for his 510th career goal. Robitaille needs two more goals to tie Gilbert Perreault for 23rd place on the all-time list.

    "I wasn't displease with the way we played," said Kings coach Larry Robinson. "I am displeased that we didn't get a great effort out of everybody."

    The Coyotes regained the lead at 14:00 of the period when Tverdovsky fired over Storr's outstretched glove and just under the crossbar for his sixth goal.

    Quint made it 3-1 at 5:13 of the second period when he took a pass from Rick Tocchet and deflected a shot off a Kings player and past Storr for his fifth goal.

    "That's the worst feeling ever," Storr said. "When I finally could see something the puck was already in the net."

    Reichel capped the scoring with an empty-net, power-play goal with 33.8 seconds left. Storr, making his first start since March 4, made 39 saves for the Kings.

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