Avs rally for 6-2 win over Jets in Game 3


Nathan MacKinnon and Valeri Nichushkin scored on the power play during a five-goal, third-period outburst and the Colorado Avalanche rallied for a 6-2 victory over the Winnipeg Jets in Game 3 on Friday night.

Alexandar Georgiev stopped 22 shots to give the Avalanche a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven first-round playoff series. Game 4 is Sunday in the Mile High City.

Trailing 2-1 in the final period, Colorado, the highest-scoring team in the league, began pouring it on. The Avalanche scored four times in a 10:24 span to energize the crowd and stun the Jets.

MacKinnon sparked the scoring run with the tying goal and Nichushkin knocked in the go-ahead tally with 15:21 remaining. Nichushkin’s goal came after Jets center Gabriel Vilardi was given a double-minor for hitting Devon Toews in the face with his stick and drawing blood. Toews left the ice with a towel held to his face.

Artturi Lehkonen and and Ross Colton added goals to make it 5-2. Toews, returning from a bloodied face, scored an empty-netter with 3:35 remaining to seal the win.

Casey Mittelstadt finished with three assists.

It was a third period where everything went wrong for the Jets, who were whistled for four penalties. Until then, the game was going their way, with Tyler Toffoli and Josh Morrissey scoring in the second period to make it 2-1.

Vezina Trophy-favorite Connor Hellebuyck continues to struggle in net and has now given up 15 goals in the series. He stopped 34 shots.

When horn sounded to end the game the players began to scuffle. There was blood on the ice as the teams skated off.

Colorado scored the first goal when Zach Parise knocked in a rebound midway through the opening period. It was the first time in the series the team that scored first has



With goals in two straight games, Parise is the first player 39 or older to score in back-to-back games since Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson during the 2013 conference semifinals, according to NHL Stats.

Georgiev has rediscovered his confidence. He gave up seven goals in Game 1, leading to speculation he might be replaced by backup Justus Annunen before Annunen was ruled out for Game 2 due to an illness. Georgiev allowed two goals in a Game 2 win and was dependable again Friday.

Georgiev was serenaded throughout the night with chants of “Geor-gie, “Geor-gie.” The only one he might want back was the goal by Toffoli, who banked in a wrist shot from a difficult angle off Georgiev.

Both teams made changes to their defense. The Jets inserted veteran Nate Schmidt into the lineup over Logan Stanley, while the Avalanche saw the return of Samuel Girard, who’s been in concussion protocol.

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