Led by Cale Makar’s spectacular game, the Colorado Avalanche ended their first-round streak with a 5-3 win over the Nashville Predators on Monday night at the Bridgestone Arena.
It’s the fourth time in their history that the Avalanche have won a four-game series while the Predators are sidelined for the first time in their history.
“It was our toughest game, we made mistakes and they took advantage of that,” said Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar.
Makar, who scored nine points in that short streak, had a spectacular goal and set up Valeri Nichushkin’s decisive goal at 12:02 in the third period.
“There were a lot of emotions. In the third, the boys were down 3-2 and fought back. It wasn’t our best night. We’ve been better in the last three meetings, but the result is satisfactory,” said MacKinnon at the end of the meeting.
Colorado took the lead when Andre Burakovsky’s shot went through the net defended by Connor Ingram. The striker’s wrist shot went over the net and a review by officials was required to confirm the first goal of the game.
With a minute remaining in the opening period, Yakov Trenin equalized with a one-timer after a perfect pass from Colton Sissons into the slot.
The score was still 1-1 in the middle when Cale Makar equalized with a good wrist shot. The Avalanche took a 2-1 lead with Makar’s third playoff goal. At 23, Makar ranks fourth in all-time defense with an average of just over a point per game in the playoffs.
Just over three minutes after Makar’s goal, Yakov Trenin equalized again with his second goal of the game late in the third period. The 25-year-old Russian beat Pavel Francouz with a good shot as he turned to put everyone back in first place.
At the beginning of the third, Filip Forsberg took the lead and gave his team a 3-2 lead. Spurred on by Mattias Ekholm, the Swede hit the back of the net to secure Nashville’s first lead of the series.
Colorado provided the batting response for Devon Toews, who used his wrist shot to level the game at 3-3 with his third goal of the series.
Makar once again excelled with a perfect pass to Valeri Nichushkin, who didn’t miss such an opportunity to put the Avalanche ahead midway through the third period.
Nathan MacKinnon completed the goal in an empty goal after scoring at least one goal in all his side’s games in that series.
In the third game, goalkeeper Darcy Kuemper missed the game with an injury. However, his trainer Jared Bednar said he was doing fine.
Despite missing his team’s morning practice, Gabriel Landeskog was on the Colorado roster.