Forest rode their luck massively - especially in the second half - with Hull City spurning chance after chance to take the lead. It looked like their profligacy was going to come back to haunt them after Tom Huddlestone was cruelly adjudged to have fouled Sam Surridge in the area, with Brennan Johnson scoring the penalty in front of the travelling fans.
Justice was partly served however, as only seconds later Coyle hit a ball into the area looking for Keane Lewis-Potter. The striker couldn't get on the end of it, but the ball evaded Brice Samba to give the Tigers a deserved point.
Story of the match
Both sides started with a loud vocal support behind them, but it was the home side who tried to break through first. Keane Lewis-Potter did well to win a corner but Forest did well to clear their lines. The away side then played the ball well through the thirds and their chance was only thwarted by a well-timed Jacob Greaves tackle.
Neither goalkeeper was tested in the opening ten minutes, but the Tigers were the ones looking more dangerous. Allahyar Sayyadmanesh and Lewis-Potter had half chances, but couldn't quite get their shots away with the Forest backline recovering each time.
Forest started to get on the ball more as the half progressed, but didn't really create any chances of note. With playoffs secured, Steve Cooper made seven changes for the away side with one eye on the semi-final next week and it was taking a while for his team to get into their usual groove. Sayyadmanesh almost forced a mistake up the other end from Forest keeper Brice Samba, and went down injured trying to get to the ball that just evaded him.
After a little delay, Hull tried to get back into the game a little and it was clear that they must be careful from set pieces. After Callum Elder's corner was easily gathered by Samba, it was only George Honeyman's excellent tackle that stopped a rapid counter attack for Forest.
Quite how Joe Worrall escaped a yellow card for pulling Keane Lewis-Potter back after a cheeky nutmeg, only the referee will know - but the decision was baffling as the tackle from the Forest captain was extremely cynical at best. The game, however, began to have an end-of-season feel and there was no surprise that when the whistle was blown for half time, the score remained goalless.
Half time: Hull City 0-0 Notts Forest
Lewie Coyle replaced the ineffective Ryan Longman at half time for the home side as Shota Arveladze attempted to make it as difficult as possible for the visitors. Lewis-Potter did very well three minutes into the half but picked the wrong pass as the ball to Elder was cut out for a throw. Sayyadmanesh did superbly well ten minutes later too, wriggling past defenders and trying to play Lewis-Potter in. His ball was just slightly overhit and went out for a goal kick.
City had their best chance just before the hour mark. A great cross from Elder was almost touched in by Sayyadmanesh, but the Iranian just couldn't get enough contact on the ball to poke it goalwards. Regan Slater had a shot blocked soon after too as City were throwing everything they could at Forest.
Tobias Figueiredo was the first to go into the book on 63 minutes for hacking down Sayyadmanesh, but neither the free kick or the corner were delivered well and Forest escaped without punishment. Sayyadmanesh was then played in behind by Honeyman and should have squared the ball to Lewis-Potter but shot tamely at Samba.
Up the other end, Nathan Baxter was called into action for the first time to deny Forest twice in succession before Sayyadmanesh this time found Lewis-Potter in the area from a counter attack but the youngster couldn't direct his header goalwards. Tom Eaves then replaced Sayyadmanesh and Tom Huddlestone replaced Richie Smallwood in what was sure to be the substitutes last appearances in a Hull City shirt. Eaves should have scored on 81 minutes but instead headed into the side netting.
One pass from Huddlestone released Eaves on 84 minutes, but Djed Spence caught him up. He still did well to move the ball to Elder who won a corner, but Forest were stubborn and kept the chances out. Huddlestone played in Lewis-Potter one-on-one with Samba, but the striker blazed the ball over the bar and Forest were lucky to not be two or three behind. Baxter then saved a Forest chance with his face as the game became end-to-end with both teams wanting to finish the season with a win.
As was totally predictable, Forest were then - massively against the run of play and extremely harsh against Huddlestone. Brennan Johnson tucked the penalty away, but the game looked like a missed opportunity for City.
That was until seconds after the restart, when Coyle's cross was missed by Lewis-Potter and curled past Samba into the net to restore parity and justice was served. Forest did not deserve the three points on City's superb second half display and it was even sweeter for the hometown boy Coyle to salvage the Tigers a point in a grandstand finish.