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Avalanche Returns Home to Host Panthers

Colorado begins two-game homestand

by ColoradoAvalanche.com / Official website of the Avs

After a two-game road trip, the Colorado Avalanche returns home Monday night to host the Florida Panthers at Pepsi Center. It's the final contest of the two-game season series between the clubs. The Avs won 5-2 in the first meeting on Dec. 6 in Sunrise, Florida.

The Avalanche franchise holds a 24-10-6 all-time record against the Panthers, including a 9-6-4 mark on home ice. Colorado has won three straight games against Florida.

Monday's outing begins a two-game homestand, which also features the Vancouver Canucks visiting Denver on Wednesday.

Last Time Out

The Avalanche extended its winning streak to four games with a 5-0 shutout victory over the Nashville Predators on Saturday at Bridgestone Arena. Alexander Kerfoot (a goal and two assists) and Nathan MacKinnon (two goals and an assist) each finished with three points to pace the Avs, while Gabriel Landeskog and Nikita Zadorov also chipped in a goal apiece. Goalie Philipp Grubauer made 38 saves for his first shutout in an Avalanche sweater and the seventh of his career.

Florida is coming off a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night. Goaltender Roberto Luongo made 18 saves and recorded his 484th career win to tie Ed Belfour for third place on the NHL's all-time wins list. Aleksander Barkov, Jonathan Huberdeau and Keith Yandle each notched a goal and an assist for the Panthers, who are 10 points back from a wild card spot in the Eastern Conference but have won four of their last five outings.

Last Time They Met

Colorado won 5-2 in the clubs' first matchup of the season on Dec. 6 at BB&T Center in Sunrise. The game was knotted at 2-2 after 40 minutes of play until the Avs scored three unanswered goals in the final frame to secure the win. Carl Soderberg and Gabriel Landeskog each registered a goal and an assist for Colorado, while Philipp Grubauer finished with 33 saves, including stopping all 11 shots he faced in the third period. Mikko Rantanen, J.T. Compher and Matt Nieto also tallied for the Avalanche, while Aaron Ekblad and Colton Sceviour were the goal scorers for the Panthers.

What To Watch

Offense

Colorado has outscored its opponents 20-4 during its current four-game win streak, including by an 11-2 margin in the third period. The Avalanche ranks eighth in the NHL in goals per game (3.32) and has scored six or more goals 11 times this season, tied with the Calgary Flames for the second-most such games behind only the Tampa Bay Lightning (15). The Avs also rank second in third-period scoring with 83 goals tallied in the final frame of regulation in 2018-19, second only to the Flames (90).

Special Teams

After going scoreless in nine straight contests, the Avs' power play has scored a goal in three straight games (4-for-15, 26.7 percent), including a pair of man-advantage tallies in Saturday's win over Nashville. The Avs rank eighth in the NHL in power-play percentage at 22.4 percent. Colorado's penalty-kill unit held the Predators scoreless on five power-play chances on Saturday and allowed only three goals (21-for-24, 87.5 percent) during the Avs' current 5-1-0 stretch.

Players To Watch

Colorado: Left Wing J.T. Compher

Compher has notched four points (two goals, two assists) over his last three outings, including the game-winning tally in Colorado's 5-3 win at the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday night. He has set new career highs in goals (14) and points (27).

Florida: Center Aleksander Barkov

Barkov posted his fourth straight multi-point game in Saturday's win against Los Angeles and has registered 11 points (six goals, five assists) over those four outings. With another multi-point performance, he would become just the sixth player in franchise history to register five consecutive multi-point outings.

The Details

Monday's game between the Avalanche and Panthers begins at 7 p.m. MT, and tickets are still available. 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.

Colorado Avalanche's Danielle Bernstein contributed this story

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