Holden’s goal in 3rd period gives Avs lead over Panthers for good
Tyson Barrie made the most of his first visit to the Florida Panthers’ arena as a player.
Barrie, whose father Len played for the Panthers from 1999-2001, had a goal and an assist to help the Colorado Avalanche beat the Panthers 4-1 on Thursday night.
Nick Holden scored the go-ahead goal in the third period, and Barrie had an assist on the play.
"I was fortunate my Dad played here and I?was 9 or 10 years old. I was always around the rink and I was always in the locker room," Barrie said. "It’s nice to come back in this building and have some success."
Gabriel Landeskog and Jarome Iginla also scored for Colorado. Semyon Varlamov made 30 saves for the Avalanche, who won for the first time in three games.
"It was an important win for us and for our confidence," Colorado coach Patrick Roy said. "We were OK in the first, but I thought we played better in the second and the third."
Aaron Ekblad and Aleksander Barkov scored for the Panthers, and Roberto Luongo stopped 25 shots.
Holden’s goal, coming in the waning seconds of a power play, broke a 2-2 tie. Holden shot from the high slot and it deflected off the stick of Florida’s Scottie Upshall and bounced through traffic past Luongo at 11:03 of the third.
"You’ve got to know in the back of your head that (power-play) time is ticking down. I didn’t know the exact time," Holden said. "We were just concentrating on getting shots through to the net and kind of get traffic and screens and that’s what we did."
Iginla added an empty-net goal with 27 seconds left. His goal tied him with Mike Bossy for 20th on the NHL career list with 573.
Colorado took a 2-1 lead on when Landeskog was able to slide the puck under Luongo’s pads at 13:02 of the second.
"I got a chance to take it to the net and tried to really just get a shot. It felt good to see it go in," Landeskog said.
Luongo had the opposite feeling.
"That second goal, I’ve got to stop," Luongo said. "That’s a bad play by me."
The Panthers tied it at 2-all 23 seconds later when Barkov redirected a pass from Brad Boyes past Varlamov. Barkov has five points in his last six games.
The Avalanche took a 1-0 lead on Barrie’s goal early in the first. Barrie skated in unchallenged to the right circle and his wrist shot got past Luongo at 2:11.
"Luongo was the (backup goalie) when my Dad played here, so it was nice to get one past him tonight," Barrie said.
The Panthers tied it a 1 on a goal by Ekblad just as a 5-on-3 power play expired. Ekblad took the puck in the high slot and his wrist shot beat Varlamov on the stick side at 5:15 of the first. The 18-year-old rookie now has five points in his last seven games and 25 points over 42 games.
It was the first power-play goal for the Panthers in their past 14 chances over six games. The Panthers played the first of five home games after going 4-2-0 on a six-game road trip.
"It’s tough, I thought after that long trip we’d play real good," coach Gerard Gallant said. "We just didn’t get it done, but I thought the effort was there."
NOTES: Luongo is tied for 11th all-time among NHL goaltenders in games played (837). … Former Major League catcher and 12-time All-Star Mike Piazza dropped the ceremonial first puck.