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game recap

Ducks top Avalanche, end three-game losing streak

Miller makes 35 saves for Anaheim; MacKinnon scores to extend point streak to 11

by Rick Sadowski / Independent Correspondent

Getzlaf's power-play goal

ANA@COL: Getzlaf fires home wrist shot for PPG

Ryan Getzlaf waits patiently until he let's go of a wrist shot that beats Pavel Francouz for a power-play goal

  • 00:51 •

DENVER -- Ryan Miller made 35 saves, and the Anaheim Ducks ended a three-game losing streak with a 5-2 win against the Colorado Avalanche at Pepsi Center on Saturday.

"They've got a lot of weapons," Miller said of the Avalanche. "I thought our guys did a great job of doing what they needed to do against this team. They're going to get some chances, but I had the guys around me. I thought we all did a good job."

Five forwards scored, and defenseman Hampus Lindholm had three assists for the Ducks (7-5-0).

"I liked scoring four goals on their goalie (Pavel Francouz), I really thought we were due for that," Anaheim coach Dallas Eakins said. "[Ryan Getzlaf] and I were talking this afternoon saying, 'We're due for a game where we score four or five goals.' There's too many games in a row where you get chances and they don't go in."


[WATCH: All Ducks vs. Avalanche highlights]


Nathan MacKinnon scored to extend his point streak to 11 games, and Francouz made 22 saves for the Avalanche (8-2-1), who had won 10 straight regular-season home games dating to last season.

"After such a complete game against [the] Vegas [Golden Knights] in their building (6-1 win Friday), I don't know if we just expected that it was going to happen if we just showed up tonight," Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog said. "Clearly, that was not the case. It's unfortunate that in a homecoming after a really good trip (4-1-1) that we showed up like this."

Adam Henrique scored 50 seconds into the first period to give Anaheim a 1-0 lead. Rickard Rakell skated down the right side and sent a cross-ice pass to Henrique at the left hash marks.

"That's an extremely fast team, and we were able to skate with them," Eakins said. "When you get up on your first shot against maybe the best team in the League, it puts you in the right mindset."

Video: ANA@COL: Henrique scores in game's opening minute

Carter Rowney made it 2-0 at 12:51 of the first, skating down the middle and scoring from the edge of the crease off a pass from Lindholm on a 2-on-1.

"My biggest takeaway is we didn't start the game on time, that's what ended up costing us the game," Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. "We weren't ready to play to a high enough level. We were just a little too casual to start the game with the puck mostly. Look at the scoring chances they had in the first period, all on the rush, almost all of them on turnovers, just not skating to check, and they created enough chances to get two goals."

Joonas Donskoi cut it to 2-1 at 5:22 of the second period on the power play when his shot from below the goal line banked in off Miller's stick.

Getzlaf made it 3-1 at 8:28 of the second with a power-play goal. He got the puck from Lindholm at the right point, skated to the hash marks, and beat Francouz glove side after his shot redirected off Avalanche defenseman Ryan Graves's stick.

Video: ANA@COL: MacKinnon scores PPG to extend streak

MacKinnon pulled the Avalanche to within 3-2 with a power-play goal at 1:38 of the third period, scoring on a backhand from the left slot after receiving a pass from J.T. Compher. Eakins challenged for goaltender interference, but the goal was upheld after video review.

MacKinnon has 15 points (six goals, nine assists) during his point streak.

Max Comtois made it 4-2 at 6:42 of the third during a scramble in front, and Jakob Silfverberg scored into an empty net at 17:47 for the 5-2 final.

"We wanted to play better after the little losing streak," Comtois said. "We wanted to make our game simple. We knew they were on a back-to-back game, so we took over in the first period and after that we closed the game."


They said it

"I thought we all did a good job of closing down their quick strike, pop-out plays around the face-off dot. They try that on both sides and they're quite good at it. We shut that down quite a bit." -- Ducks goalie Ryan Miller

"It's a valuable lesson for us this early in the season to realize that we're a good team, a really good team when we work for it and we go out there and work for one another, play like we're supposed to, and all of a sudden we're a tough hockey team to beat." -- Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog


Need to know

MacKinnon's season-opening point streak is the fifth longest in Avalanche/Quebec Nordiques history behind Mats Sundin (30 games in 1992-93), Peter Stastny (16 games in 1987-88), Michel Goulet (14 games in 1985-86), and Joe Sakic (12 games in 1988-89). … Defenseman Erik Gudbranson had two shots on goal, two hits and a plus-2 rating in a Ducks-high 22:24 of ice time in his Anaheim debut after being acquired in a trade from the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday. 


What's next

Ducks: At the Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday (8 p.m. ET; ATTSN-RM, PRIME, NHL.TV)

Avalanche: Host the Florida Panthers on Wednesday (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, ALT, FS-F, NHL.TV)

Video: Miller, Lindholm lead Ducks past Avalanche

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