Bru­ins’ “lucky bounce” ex­tends Avs’ streak to 7

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Gethin Cool­baugh

B OSTON» The Avalanche has lost games in a num­ber of ways in what now is a seven-game streak in the wrong di­rec­tion.

This time, it was on a lucky bounce.

Brad Marc­hand scored 4:03 into the ex­tra pe­riod af­ter his shot de­flected off an op­po­nent’s skate, ex­tend­ing the Bos­ton Bru­ins’ points streak to seven games with a 2-1 vic­tory Sun­day.

Pa­trice Berg­eron left the puck at the top of the right cir­cle for Marc­hand, who skated into the slot and in­ad­ver­tently used Matt Calvert’s skate to get the puck past goalie Se­myon Var­lamov.

Nathan MacKin­non scored his 29th goal for Colorado, ty­ing Gabe Lan­deskog for the team lead. Var­lamov had 33 saves as the Avs earned a point with a third straight over­time loss.

“Tonight’s just a wrist shot that hap­pens to hit our guy’s foot and changes di­rec­tion,” Colorado coach Jared Bed­nar said.

Colorado (22-22-11) fell 4-3 in OT at Wash­ing­ton on Thurs­day be­fore los­ing by the same score Sat­ur­day against the Is­lan­ders in New York.

“This is kind of the luck we’ve been hav­ing with it,” Bed­nar said. “We’re work­ing on it, we’re watch­ing video on it, guys are pay­ing at­ten­tion to what we’re say­ing and de­fend­ing hard 3on-3.”

Bed­nar called his team’s three­game points streak “a huge step for­ward,” but the sen­ti­ment dif­fered in­side the Avs’ locker room.

“It’s just not good enough,” Var­lamov said. “We’ve got to find a way to win in over­time.”

Marc­hand ex­tended his fran­chise record with his 14th ca­reer over­time goal.

“We got a lucky bounce, and we’ll take it,” Marc­hand said.

John Moore also scored and Jaroslav Halak made 35 saves for the Bru­ins, who im­proved to 40-3 in their last seven.

Bos­ton (31-17-8) moved one point ahead of ri­val Mon­treal for third place in the At­lantic Di­vi­sion and trails se­cond-place Toronto by a point.

“It was a needed point for us,” said Halak, who snapped a per­sonal five-game skid. “The stand­ing in our di­vi­sion, it’s tight, and it’s go­ing to be a race un­til the end so we need to keep get­ting points right now.”

The Avalanche sit four points out of the se­cond wild-card spot in the Western Con­fer­ence.

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