Avalanche snap skid with 5-3 win over Columbus
DENVER (AP) — Ryan O’Reilly and Gabriel Landeskog scored power-play goals, helping the Colorado Avalanche snap a four-game losing streak with a 5-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night.
Nathan MacKinnon, Jamie McGinn and Jan Hejda also scored for the Avalanche, who won despite being outshot 38-23. MacKinnon’s goal, also on the power play, came with just over a minute remaining. Semyon Varlamov had 35 saves for Colorado.
Nick Foligno, Boone Jenner and Ryan Johansen scored Columbus’ goals.
Leading 3-2, Colorado scored on the power play for the second time when Paul Stastny passed across the slot to Landeskog, who was perched on the doorstep. Landeskog put the puck into an open net at 8:10 of the third period.
Just 37 seconds later, Foligno responded with a wraparound shot that got past Varlamov to again narrow the Blue Jackets’ deficit to one.
Columbus snapped a 1-1 tie at 8:34 of the second period on a goal by Jenner, but the Blue Jackets couldn’t hold the lead as the Avalanche scored a pair of goals less than three minutes apart later in the period.
Matt Duchene’s shot from the slot bounded away from goalie Curtis McElhinney and onto the stick of McGinn, who backhanded the rebound into the net to make it 2-2 at 12:04 of the second.
The Avalanche then capitalized on a power play to take the lead at 14:42 of the second with Duchene again in the middle of the action. His shot was stopped by McElhinney, but the rebound again got away. O’Reilly gathered in the loose puck and knocked it into the net to put the Avalanche up by one at 14:42 of the second.
The Blue Jackets scored first 4:13 into the game.
Foligno muscled his way past defenseman Hejda to get a shot that bounced off the pads of Varlamov. Johansen beat MacKinnon and slapped the puck past Varlamov for his 16th goal.
Hejda, who spent four seasons with Columbus from 2007-11, made amends at 6:33. He got to a loose puck along the boards, and his slap shot from the left point wriggled through McElhinney’s pads for his fourth goal.
NOTES: Duchene had a team-leading 16 points in December (4 goals, 12 assists). … The Avalanche hosted a New Year’s Eve game at the Pepsi Center for the first time. … Johansen has 10 goals and eight assists in his last 17 games. … Columbus is 6-17-2 against Colorado.