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game recap

Avalanche lose to Blackhawks in OT but gain in wild card

Keith wins it at 1:23 for Chicago, which stays in Western race

by Scott King / Correspondent

Keith goes five-hole on OT winner

COL@CHI: Keith tucks OT winner five-hole on Grubauer

Duncan Keith drives hard to the net and slides a shot five-hole on Philipp Grubauer to give the Blackhawks a 2-1 win in overtime

  • 01:21 •

CHICAGO -- The Colorado Avalanche gained ground in the Western Conference wild-card race despite losing 2-1 in overtime to the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center on Sunday.

Colorado (34-29-13), which had won four in a row, leads the Arizona Coyotes and Minnesota Wild by two points for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Philipp Grubauer made 40 saves.

"Yeah, obviously they were a desperate club," Avalanche defenseman Tyson Barrie said. "I don't think they wanted to have it go to overtime, and that was a big point for us. It's disappointing we didn't get the two, but it still puts us in a position where we control our own destiny. [Grubauer] was great tonight. We just have to move on. We have some big games coming up."


[WATCH: All Avalanche vs. Blackhawks highlights]


Chicago (33-32-10), which ended a three-game losing streak (0-2-1), is five points behind the Avalanche. Corey Crawford made 19 saves.

Video: COL@CHI: Anisimov deflects a PPG past Grubauer

"That would have been really big to try and get a late one there and get two on them, but you know, we'll take the extra one and keep going," Crawford said. "We're playing well. The third period was great, didn't give them anything. We were aggressive the whole period. That was great hockey, we got to bring that into the next game."

Each team was playing the second game of a home-and-home after the Avalanche defeated the Blackhawks 4-2 in Colorado on Saturday.

Duncan Keith won it at 1:23 of overtime for Chicago after skating down the left wing and beating Grubauer five-hole.

"I don't score too many overtime goals, but [Nathan MacKinnon] was coming down and I'm just trying to not get embarrassed there, because he's a pretty good player," Keith said. "And he kind of fell and I had the jump on him, and I was thinking he might try to poke it in my back end, but I saw that he wasn't going to have enough room, so I just tried to slam at the net it as hard as I could. It hit the net and luckily it went in." 

Alexander Kerfoot gave Colorado a 1-0 lead at 15:26 of the second period when Barrie's one-timer in from the point deflected off his knee in front on a 5-on-3 power play.

Artem Anisimov tied it 1-1 at 1:44 of the third period, redirecting Brent Seabrook's point shot on the power play.

"I don't think we played really good today," Grubauer said. "They came out in the first period, they came out in the last period. Back-to-back, those are huge points, important points. We need to make better execution on some plays. We were fine, but I think we got lucky we walked away with one point here."

Video: EA Sports Overtime Winner: Keith wins it for Chicago


They said it

"We knew we were going to face a desperate hockey team, there's no question. We had a couple of areas we wanted to improve on from last night's game, and then we had some things we did really well yesterday that we wanted to build on. We just didn't get it done tonight. It was a tough game for our group, no question." -- Avalanche coach Jared Bednar 

"It's important to keep playing. Keep playing, maintain a high level, and this is a team that can go on a run and win a bunch in a row. But you just got to get one first and that's what we've done." -- Blackhawks coach Jeremy Colliton


Need to know

Colorado is 2-12 in games decided in overtime this season. … Kerfoot has three points (one goal, two assists) in his past two games. … MacKinnon has one assist in his past four games. … Barrie has five goals in his past five games. … Keith became the 48th defenseman in NHL history over the age of 35 to score a regular-season overtime goal. The only other Blackhawks player to do that was Phil Housley (38 years, 236 days) on Oct. 31, 2002 against the Los Angeles Kings.


What's next

Avalanche: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN)

Blackhawks: At the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, FS-A, WGN, NHL.TV)

Video: Anisimov, Keith lift Blackhawks to 2-1 OT victory

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