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Colorado Wraps Up East Coast Swing in Boston

Avalanche plays Bruins in second half of back-to-back afternoon games

by ColoradoAvalanche.com / Official site of the Avs

The Colorado Avalanche wraps up a three-game road trip on Sunday afternoon against the Boston Bruins. It's the ninth of 11 back-to-back sets for the Avs this season after they played at the New York Islanders on Saturday.

Both the Avalanche (22-22-10) and Bruins (30-17-8) will be playing on consecutive afternoons, as Boston hosted the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

The Avs have a 22-10-1 record against the B's since moving to Colorado in 1995 and hold a 12-2-1 mark on the road in the series. The Avalanche has won the last four games versus the Bruins.

Last Time Out

Colorado struck first and led 2-0 late in the second period but fell 4-3 in overtime to the New York Islanders on Saturday afternoon at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Carl Soderberg matched a career high with three points (one goal and two assists) and J.T. Compher scored the game-tying goal with less than three minutes remaining in regulation to force the extra frame. Erik Johnson also tallied for the Avs, while goaltender Semyon Varlamov made 37 saves.

The Bruins extended their point streak to six games with a 5-4 overtime win over the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday afternoon. Patrice Bergeron led the Bruins with three points (one goal, two assists), with his goal coming 2:34 into the extra stanza to lift Boston to the win. Danton Heinen (one goal, one assist), Torey Krug (two assists), Brad Marchand (one goal, one assist) and Charlie McAvoy (one goal, one assist) also had multi-point efforts for Boston, which received a 25-save performance from Tuukka Rask.

Last Time They Met

The Avs scored four times in the third period to erase a 3-2 deficit and top the Bruins 6-3 on Nov. 14 at Pepsi Center. Colorado got six points from its top line, paced by Mikko Rantanen, who finished with three points (one goal, two assists). Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Calvert, Nathan MacKinnon, Tyson Jost and Alexander Kerfoot also scored for the Avs, while Jake DeBrusk (twice) and David Pastrnak found the back of the net for the Bruins. Avalanche netminder Semyon Varlamov stopped 20 shots, while the Bruins' Jaroslav Halak made 19 saves. Colorado finished 3-for-3 on the power play, marking the fourth time in Avalanche history (since 1995-96) the club was perfect with the man advantage with three chances (the team has never gone 4-for-4).

What To Watch

Milestone Watch

Gabriel Landeskog (397) and Mikko Rantanen (197) enter Sunday's game needing three points to reach 400 and 200 career points, respectively. Landeskog would join Tampa Bay's Nikita Kucherov (415) as the only members from the 2011 NHL Draft to reach 400 points, while Rantanen would join Connor McDavid (336) and Jack Eichel (234) as the only players from the 2015 draft class to hit 200.

Both Teams on Short Rest

Colorado and Boston each enter Sunday's matchup having played on Saturday afternoon. The Avalanche is playing back-to-back games for the eighth time this season and is 3-3-1 in the second game of the set, while Boston is playing its 11th of 14 consecutive-day set and is 7-1-2 in the second game of those contests. The Avalanche will be playing its seventh of 13 afternoon outings (5 p.m. local time start or earlier) this year (3-2-1).

Players To Watch

Colorado: Defenseman Erik Johnson

Johnson notched two points (goal and assist) against the Islanders on Saturday, his second multi-point outing in his last three games. He has four points (two goals and two assists) in four contests since returning from a head injury on Feb. 2. Johnson also had a tally and a helper in Tuesday's outing versus the Columbus Blue Jackets, and he now has 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) on the campaign.

Boston: Defenseman Zdeno Chara

Chara only logged 5:24 of ice time in the Bruins' first matchup with the Avs after sustaining a lower-body injury in the opening period. He missed 19 games with the injury but has returned to play in each of the past 18 contests for Boston. Chara is two tallies shy of his 200th career NHL goal, becoming just the 21st blueliner in league history to reach the milestone.

Lineup Notes

Philipp Grubauer is expected to get the start in net for Colorado after Semyon Varlamov guarded the pipes for the past two games, including the first half of the back-to-back set on Saturday at the New York Islanders.

The Details

Colorado and Boston clash at 1 p.m. MT at TD Garden. The game can be watched locally on Altitude or streamed on select devices with the AltitudeNOW app (in market) or NHL.tv (out of market). The radio broadcast can be heard on Altitude Sports Radio FM 92.5 in the Denver area or online at ColoradoAvalanche.com.

Danielle Bernstein contributed this story

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