EditorsNote: fixes “past” in lede; adds “for third place” in third graf
Petr Mrazek had 38 saves for his third shutout in his past eight games, Andrei Svechnikov had two goals and an assist, and the surging Carolina Hurricanes beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-0 in Denver on Monday night.
Dougie Hamilton also scored to back Mrazek, who is 7-1-0 over the eight-game span.
Carolina (38-24-7) moved ahead of Pittsburgh for third place in the Metropolitan Division with its 13th win in the last 17 games. The teams are tied with 83 points, but the Hurricanes hold the first tiebreaker.
Philipp Grubauer stopped 30 shots for the Avalanche, who missed a chance to gain ground in the Western Conference wild-card standings. Colorado (30-28-12) trails Minnesota, which lost at home to San Jose on Monday, by two points and is a point behind Arizona. The Coyotes lost at Chicago on Monday.
The game was scoreless until the Hurricanes finally broke through midway through the second period.
Svechnikov was tripped carrying the puck through the neutral zone, and the puck went to Justin Williams, who fed it back to Hamilton as he crossed into Colorado’s zone. Hamilton skated in on Grubauer and beat him with a wrister at 10:07. It was his 13th of the season.
The Avalanche nearly tied it 18 seconds later when Mikko Rantanen had the puck in front and put a backhander on net. Mrazek made the save to keep Carolina in front.
In the first minute of the third period, Colin Wilson came in alone on Mrazek, but the goaltender stopped it with his right shoulder. A few minutes later, Rantanen hit the crossbar with a shot.
Carolina made those missed chances hurt when Svechnikov got a diagonal pass from Teuvo Teravainen in front of the net and floated a backhander past Grubauer at 7:08. It was his 16th of the season.
Mrazek denied Wilson two more times on point-blank shots to keep Colorado off the board, and Svechnikov scored into an empty net at 17:33.
Hurricanes defenseman Calvin de Haan left the game early in the third period when he took a stick to the face. He did not return.
—Field Level Media