March 10, 2018 / 11:24 PM / 2 months ago

Avs score 3 goals in first 5 minutes, cruise past Coyotes

Mikko Rantanen collected a goal and two assists while Tyson Barrie, Blake Comeau and Carl Soderberg each netted one goal and one assist as the Colorado Avalanche skated to a 5-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes in NHL action Saturday afternoon at Pepsi Center in Denver.

Avs goalie Jonathan Bernier made 22 saves to earn the win, although he left early in the third period and was replaced by Semyon Varlamov the rest of the way as Colorado snapped a streak of three-straight overtime losses.

So much for a sleepy afternoon game. It was a wild first few minutes at the Pepsi Center.

Comeau opened the scoring 1:45 into the clash by finishing off a 3-on-1 rush. He took a feed from Soderberg and deked Arizona goalie Darcy Kuemper before sliding home a backhand.

That just started the craziness, as Christian Dvorak pulled the Coyotes even 29 second later. Bernier didn’t stop the ring-around of the puck and it came to Richard Panik, who fired a long shot that Dvorak deflected home on his team’s first shot on net.

But just 27 seconds after that, Barrie put the Avs ahead 2-1. Nathan MacKinnon fed Barrie at the point, and his floating wrist shot made it through the maze.

Soderberg then scored at the 4:22 mark of the opening frame to give the hosts a 3-1 edge. He tried to pass on a 2-on-1 rush, and his effort deflected off Panik and into the goal, giving the Avs three goals on four shots.

Panik responded with a marker of his own with just under five minutes remaining in the second period to make it a one-goal game, but the Avs put down the hammer with a pair of goals midway through the third period.

Tyson Jost batted home a waist-high rebound for a power-play goal at 10:45 of the third period — giving Colorado man-advantage goals in seven consecutive games — and then Rantanen tallied at 12:40 to round out the scoring.

MacKinnon collected two assists to give him 16 points (7-9-16) in an eight-game point streak. Barrie’s two points give him nine (4-5-9) in a six-game point streak.

Kuemper stopped 26 shots for the Coyotes.

—Field Level Media

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