After playing well but not seeing the results it wanted for many of the teams past few games, the Colorado Avalanche was rewarded for its hard work.
Colorado exploded for six goals in the second period and beat the Los Angeles Kings by a final score of 7-1 at Pepsi Center on Saturday afternoon.
The Avalanche's six tallies in the second stanza tied a franchise record for goals in a period. It's the ninth six-goal frame for Colorado/Quebec and first since March 3, 1999 at Florida (third period). It is also the first on home ice since Dec. 5, 1995 versus San Jose (first period).
The six markers in one period is the most by any team this season and the most since the Pittsburgh Penguins scored six against Washington on Jan. 16, 2017.
Video: LAK@COL: Rantanen goes top shelf from circle for PPG
"Real good start to the game, right away committed defensively, getting over the top of pucks," said Avs head coach Jared Bednar. "Our D's gaps coming out of the offensive zone were fantastic, we turned a lot of pucks over, good decisions with pucks, we were firm. A lot of things to like and then our guys capitalize on some of our opportunities. I thought we could have had a few more in the first period, but I thought (Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan) Quick was really good, but we did a nice job. I liked our game. Overall good commitment to our two-way game."
Ten different Avs skaters registered at least a point and six of them had multi-point performances led by defenseman Tyson Barrie, who had three assists and a plus-3 rating.
Barrie extended his point and assist streak to three games and has totaled five assists in that span.
"I think we were just kind of relentless from the first period on," said Barrie. "We were playing our game, playing the right way and if you play that way eventually you are going to get some breaks and some goals and that happened tonight."
Video: LAK@COL: Kerfoot tips home Barrie's drive
It is the second time this season the Avs have scored seven times in a game, the first coming in a 7-3 win over the Kings on Nov. 21 at Staples Center. Colorado wrapped up the season series against Los Angeles with a 2-0-1 mark and outscored the Kings by a combined 16-7 margin.
The win also marked the 10th time this season that Colorado has scored six or more goals in an outing, the most in a season since 1996-97 when the Avs had 12 such performances. Only two other NHL teams have more such games with six or more goals (Tampa Bay and Calgary, 11 each).
"I liked this step forward today… Now we got to follow it up. It is one game, that's all it is," said Bednar. "We got to keep our team game going and build off what we did today."
VARLY VARLY: Although the Avs scored six times in the middle period, their goaltender still had a heavy workload in the stanza. Netminder Semyon Varlamov made 18 saves in the frame and finished the contest stopping 30 of the 31 shots he saw.
"I thought he was really good, he just looked steady and calm," Bednar said of Varlamov. "We needed some big saves early, we got them. We scored some timely goals of course but they had a little push at the start of the second period where they came after us and I thought we were a little cute with the puck, a little soft with the puck coming out of our own zone, and they worked real hard to turn some pucks over.
"But, we bounced back from that. We got some saves from Varly in that timeframe and then we went down to the other end and we were a little opportunistic and scored on some nice plays on our power play."
Video: LAK@COL: Varlamov gets across to deny Carter's chance
INJURY UPDATES: After scoring twice in the second period, forward Mikko Rantanen suffered a lower-body injury and did not return for the third frame. He leads the Avs and presently ranks second in the NHL with 73 points (23 goals, 50 assists) this year.
"Mikko, he had a lower-body tweak so we just kind of kept him out of the third period for precautionary reasons, we wanted to make sure he is healthy for our next game," said Bednar.
Colorado defenseman Erik Johnson also did not finish the game after suffering an upper-body injury in the first period of play, but Bednar did not have an update on him.
The Bloomington, Minnesota, native has played in all of Colorado's 48 games this season and has recorded 14 points (three goals, 11 assists).
HOME FOR THE NEXT FOUR: The contest against Los Angeles was the first of the Avs' season-long, five-game homestand that will be broken up by the NHL All-Star Break and Colorado's bye week.
The home stay continues on Monday with another afternoon game against the Nashville Predators before the Avs host the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday. The Avalanche will then take eight days off before hosting the Vancouver Canucks on Feb. 2 and wrapping up the stay on Feb. 5 against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
MORE NOTES: The Avs scored a short-handed goal for the seventh time this season, ranked third in the NHL. It was the first of the campaign to be scored on home ice, as Colorado's six other short-handed tallies have come on the road.
The Avalanche finished 2-for-6 on the power play, the ninth time this season Colorado has notched multiple power-play goals. The Avs are now 46-for-181 (25.4 percent) with the man advantage this season, the sixth-ranked unit in the league.
Nathan MacKinnon finished with two assists to reach the 70-point threshold this season, the fifth player in the league this season to reach the mark. He is tied for fourth in the league in points and is tied for fifth in assists (43). Colorado is the only team to have more than one player with 70 or more points in 2018-19. It's the fourth time in franchise history and first since the club relocated to Denver in which two Avalanche teammates each collected 70 points prior to the team's 50th contest. The last set of teammates to accomplish the feat did so over 20 years ago: Mario Lemieux (34-50-84) and Jaromir Jagr (42-34-76) in 1996-97 with Pittsburgh.
Carl Soderberg scored his 16th goal of the season to match his career high reached both last season and in 2013-14 campaign with Boston. He now has five points (four goals, one assist) over his last three outings.
Gabriel Landeskog scored his 29th goal of the season, tied for fourth in the NHL. His second-period tally was also his 10th power-play marker of the campaign, tied for fourth in the league, and his eighth game-winning goal, ranked first in the NHL.
Matt Calvert registered his first multi-point game of the season and first since Nov. 2, 2017 at Florida as a member of the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Landeskog, MacKinnon and Rantanen combined for Colorado's fourth goal of the game, the 22nd time this season that all three have factored on the same goal.
Nikita Zadorov played a season-high 24:57 and matched his season high with a plus-3 rating.