MacKin­non scores twice as Avalanche win

Lethbridge Herald - - SPORTS - THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS — DEN­VER

Nathan MacKin­non scored twice, in­clud­ing one as part of a three-goal first pe­riod and an­other to chase Nashville goal­tender Pekka Rinne from the game, and the Colorado Avalanche held off the Preda­tors 5-3 in Game 3 on Mon­day night to pull to 2-1 in the firstround se­ries.

Blake Comeau and Gabriel Bourque also scored in a fu­ri­ous open­ing pe­riod that revved up a pom-pom wav­ing ca­pac­ity crowd. Gabriel Lan­deskog was cred­ited with an empty-net goal for the Avalanche, who snapped a 12-game skid against the Preda­tors. Game 4 is Wed­nes­day in Den­ver. For a third straight game in the se­ries, Colorado scored first. This time, the Avs were able to make it hold up. MacKin­non and his team­mates have been a dif­fer­ent bunch at home this year. Their 28 home wins in the reg­u­lar sea­son was tied for the most in fran­chise his­tory with the 2000-01 squad that hoisted the Stan­ley Cup.

MacKin­non's goal at 4:25 of the sec­ond pe­riod gave Colorado a 4-0 lead and prompted the Preda­tors to pull Rinne in favour of backup Ju­use Saros. Rinne al­lowed four goals on 15 shots.

Jonathan Bernier stopped 29 shots on a night when the Avalanche fin­ished 0 for 5 on the power play. Ryan Jo­hansen had a sec­ond-pe­riod goal and Colton Sis­sons scored an­other in the third to make it 4-2. Saros was pulled for an ex­tra skater with around 2:20 left and, mo­ments later, Lan­deskog was cred­ited with a goal af­ter be­ing dragged down on a break­away. A slid­ing Lan­deskog was try­ing to get the puck over to MacKin­non.

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