Thursday, 25 April, 2019

MacKinnon scores in OT, Avalanche beat Flames to even series | AP sports

Cale Makar has options. But which is the right one for him and the Avs Cale Makar has options. But which is the right one for him and the Avs
Cassandra Castillo | 16 April, 2019, 11:59

Matt Nieto netted the Colorado Avalanche's first goal of the 2019 Stanley Cup playoffs Saturday, a shorthanded tally in Game 2 of their first-round series vs. the Calgary Flames. MacKinnon has looked like a man on a mission at the start of the series, generating 12 shots on goal in two games. Smith hasn't played a playoff game since that post-season seven years ago.

"Our killers did an unbelievable job to kill off all those penalties and I was able to make a couple big saves there in the second, then we go down the ice and (Mangiapane) scores a big goal for us, so obviously that's a big momentum swing in the game", Smith said.

With chants of "Smitty" raining down at Scotiabank Saddledome, Smith made a number of important stops throughout the game.

With less than three minutes in regulation and Colorado's net empty, J.T. Compher managed to tie the game at 2-2 and force the overtime frame.

Bet on the game or on the Flames, Avalanche to win the Stanley Cup at DraftKings and get a free $20 bet when you sign up.

Grubauer finished with 35 saves, and Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said his team could easily be down two games if not for his goaltender's performance.

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"He gave us a chance (to win) for sure", said Flames' Head Coach Bill Peters in regards to his netminder. "I liked the speed we played with", said Landeskog. Maybe those stakes explain why they're so focused right now, but either way, it seems like Colorado could make this an interesting Round 1 series. First, Philipp Grubauer made a fantastic save, then Nathan MacKinnon used his blazing speed and unsafe shot to score an OT goal that even a boiling-hot netminder couldn't stop. I just wanted to bring it to my backhand and I saw open ice there.

After dominating the majority of the play in regulation, the Avalanche almost lost the game late in the third period when Sean Monahan got loose in front to beat Philipp Grubauer after a few blocked shots.

"We have to be better", Giordano said.

"We're going to learn our lesson and play Game 3 with a lot more urgency". "We had moments tonight but we have to put together a full 60". "We're thrilled to be going back 1-1 and get back in front of that Pepsi Center crowd and try to get a lead in the series".

With the Avs on the power play for the third consecutive time, Smith made two huge saves 30 seconds apart to keep the game scoreless. Calgary went 1 for 5 on the power play, while the Avs' power play, which ranked No. 7 in the regular season, went 0 for 4 to fall to 0 for 8 in the postseason.

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