Sissons nets hat trick to lead Predators past Avalanche 4-1
The fifth-year center got his second career hat trick and Colorado had two apparent goals nullified by replay reviews as the Nashville Predators beat the Avalanche 4-1 Wednesday night.
“Everybody has a team or two they have success against and feel good against and fortunately for me, it’s a team in our division,” said Sissons, who has scored eight of his 26 career goals against Colorado. “They are always tough games (against the Avs), like playoff games, and I like playing in those games. Maybe that’s it.”
Sissons’ play has figured in an even bigger run of success by Nashville, which improved to 7-0 on the road this season and extended its regular-season winning streak against Colorado to 11 games.
“We just stay focused and do our thing,” Sissons said. “I don’t know if being on the road and only focusing on the road helps us. But we’ve been sharp.”
Ryan Hartman added an empty-net goal with 2:54 left for Nashville, which benefited from the nullified goals in sending Colorado to a fourth straight loss.
“We know how big it is,” Nick Bonino said. “Those were big challenges. The first one I think you could see; the second was a gusty call. It was game-changing.”
Avalanche coach Jared Bednar thought his team’s poor execution might have contributed to the adverse rulings.
“I have to try and find the reviews that they have because to me, one could be inconclusive, maybe both, I don’t know,” Bednar said. “But I think our execution was poor. Tape-to-tape passes we’re throwing into guys’ skates even when there aren’t players in between them, going offside on goals. That’s part execution, slows down our pace, slows down the tempo of our game.
“The two goals getting called back to me is just another aspect of our lack of execution.”
Trailing 2-0, the Avalanche had an apparent goal at 1:29 of the second period waived off after a replay review showed the puck had drifted across the blue line, making it offside. Samuel Girard was straddling the blue line when he passed to Ian Cole, whose shot zoomed into the net past goalie Pekka Rinne only to have it erased after the Predators’ challenge was upheld.
A second Avalanche goal was disallowed, on a shot by Colin Wilson, with 12:33 remaining in the third following a Predators challenge. Officials took away the score after the replay review, saying the Avs were offside when the play started.
Girard was at the center of the only goal that counted for Colorado, a power-play score. He fired a pass down the middle of the ice that Matt Calvert redirected past Rinne to pull the Avalanche to 2-1 at 7:08 of the second period. The goal was upheld after a replay review.
Nashville rebuilt its lead on the power play. Kyle Turris, off a feed from Kevin Fiala, wristed a shot from inside the right circle that Sisson tipped into the net past goalie Semyon Varlamov for his third of the night at 19:57 of the second.
Sissons got the first two thirds of the hat trick in the first period. At 13:39 of the period, Varlamov stopped a shot from Bonino but the rebound trickled out and Sissons was there with his stick to tap it in.
Four minutes later, Sissons gathered a cross-ice pass from Roman Josi and wristed a shot past Varlamov from in close.
NOTES: Sissons has four multigoal games in his career, including his first hat trick last Jan. 5 against Tampa Bay. … Avalanche forward Sheldon Dries took a puck off the side of his face late in the first period. He stayed down on the ice stunned for several moments before managing to get up and skate off under his own power. He went to the dressing room for further examination and treatment before returning in the second period. … It was the first of four meetings this season between the Central Division rivals.
Predators: Continue their five-game road trip in Dallas on Saturday night.
Avalanche: At the Winnipeg Jets on Friday night.