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GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Logan Couture had two goals and goaltender Antti Niemi stopped 35 shots for his fourth shutout of the season in San Jose's 4-0 victory over Phoenix on Monday.

Couture scored his 17th goal midway through the second period and got his 18th with 90 seconds remaining. Tommy Wingels and Joe Pavelski also scored in a dominating three-goal second period, when the Sharks put 23 shots on Coyotes backup goaltender Jason LaBarbera. Coyotes starter Mike Smith missed the game with a lower-body injury.

San Jose (22-13-7) moved within a point of Los Angeles for fourth place in the Western Conference and home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs with six games remaining in the regular season.

The defending Pacific Division champion Coyotes (18-17-1) remain four points behind Detroit and Columbus for the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot entering a three-game road trip to St. Louis, Chicago and Detroit that begins Thursday.

Niemi recorded his 21st victory of the season, tying Pittsburgh's Marc-Andre Fleury and Minnesota's Niklas Backstrom for the most in the league.

The Coyotes had won three straight games against the Sharks at Jobing.com Arena and had not lost at home in the series in more than two years, since March 26, 2011.

San Jose is 2-2-1 since reeling off an eight-game winning streak to move out of the middle of the Western Conference pack.

Niemi had a 21-save shutout against the Coyotes in a 1-0 shootout loss Feb. 9 in San Jose. He won 35 games in 2010-11 and 34 last season as the Sharks' regular netminder.

Couture broke a scoreless tie when he put a rebound past LaBarbera with 8:50 remaining in the second period. LaBarbera saved a shot by Jason Demers from the top of the right circle, but the puck bounced directly for Couture, who scored his second goal in three games.

Phoenix had the best scoring chances in the first period, when Mikkel Boedker hit the right post with 8 1/2 minutes remaining and Niemi stopped a point-blank shot from David Moss with five minutes left.

NOTES: Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith, who had shut out the Sharks in four of his last six starts against them, did not dress because of a lower-body injury. Smith blanked San Jose on March 10, 2012, and March 29, 2012, stopping 80 shots combined, and is 5-0-1 with an 0.97 goals-against average in the last six against them. Smith missed six full games after absorbing a hard hit in a 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on March 21 but had played the last four, starting with a 4-0 shutout against the Colorado Avalanche on April 6. ... The Coyotes recalled goaltender Chad Johnson to back up LaBarbera. Phoenix also added forward Nick Johnson, as Lauri Korpikoski (upper body) missed his 10th straight game. ... Forward Raffi Torres, sent to the Sharks by the Coyotes at the trade deadline, played his former team for the first time. ... Veteran Sharks captain Joe Thornton has set several career milestones in Arizona -- first NHL game (Oct, 8, 1997), 500th point (Feb. 12, 2006) and 1,000th point (April 8, 2011).
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