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game recap

Rantanen extends point streak to 10 in Avalanche win against Panthers

Soderberg gets two goals for Colorado, which scores twice in 44 seconds in third period

by Alain Poupart / NHL.com Correspondent

Rantanen scores on deflection

COL@FLA: Rantanen redirects shot past Luongo

Mikko Rantanen redirects Patrik Nemeth's shot past Roberto Luongo to give the Avalanche a 1-0 lead and extend his point streak to 10 games

  • 00:41 •

SUNRISE, Fla. -- J.T. Compher scored the go-ahead goal in the third period, and Mikko Rantanen extended his point streak to 10 games for the Colorado Avalanche in a 5-2 win against the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center on Thursday.

Compher tipped a shot from the point from Gabriel Landeskog at 6:21 for a 3-2 lead shortly after replacing Rantanen on Colorado's top line with Landeskog and Nathan MacKinnon.

"Obviously, whenever coach puts you out with guys of that caliber it's exciting," Compher said. "It was a great opportunity for me, and seeing how hard those guys work, they dog pucks all the time. I just tried to get out there to get on the forecheck trying to create turnovers, and we had a real good shift, pinned them in their zone and were able to get a goal."

 

[WATCH: All Avalanche vs. Panthers highlights]

 

Carl Soderberg scored two goals, Landeskog had a goal and an assist and Rantanen scored for the Avalanche (17-7-5), who have points in 12 of their past 13 games (10-1-2). Philipp Grubauer made 33 saves.

Colorado is 11-5-2 on the road, four victories shy of their total for the 2017-18 season (15-19-7).

Video: COL@FLA: Compher, Soderberg score 44 seconds apart

"It's just the hunger and the will to succeed from our guys," Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said. "Maybe our expectations [last year] weren't high enough on the road and I think this year we're trying to take the next step and continue what we've been doing at home."

Colton Sceviour and Aaron Ekblad scored for the Panthers (11-11-5), who have alternated wins and losses the past seven games (3-2-2). Roberto Luongo made 32 saves in his second start after missing five games because of a knee injury.

Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau did not have a point, ending his multipoint streak at six games, one shy of the NHL season high by Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs from Oct. 3-15.

"I can't explain it to you," Luongo said. "I don't understand what happened there. They're a good team offensively and if you make mistakes they're going to make you pay. We had a good first 40 minutes and for some reason we didn't come out in the third."

After Compher scored his seventh goal in 13 games this season, Soderberg scored 44 seconds later, at 7:05, on a slap shot from the slot to make it 4-2. The goal was upheld after Florida challenged for goalie interference when it was determined that defenseman MacKenzie Weegar caused forward Matt Nieto to make contact with Luongo.

Landeskog scored an empty-net goal at 18:26 for the 5-2 final.

"The first two periods we didn't really feel that we played to the level that we know we can and in the third we decided to put pucks in deep, and that's what we know is the recipe for success, and let our speed and let our forecheck do the work," Landeskog said. "We were able to come up with some secondary pucks and [Compher] had a real nice tip there."

Rantanen, who leads the NHL with 47 points, gave the Avalanche a 1-0 lead at 10:40 of the first period when he tipped Patrik Nemeth's wrist shot from the top of the left face-off circle.

Sceviour tied the score 1-1 at 17:53 when he tipped Bogdan Kiselevich's shot from the point.

Soderberg gave Colorado a 2-1 lead at 5:44 of the second period when his wrist shot bounced off Luongo's facemask, floated over him and ricocheted off his back for a shorthanded goal.

Ekblad tied it 2-2 on the power play at 6:19 when he took Jared McCann's pass at the bottom of the left circle and shot into an open net.

"We talked about in the intermission being in good position, a 2-2 game going into the third period," Ekblad said. "We didn't get the job done. It's been a recurring theme a few times this year, just not doing enough to win. We've got to get the pucks out at our blue line. That's what's costing us."

Video: COL@FLA: Soderberg wires home wrister for SHG

 

They said it

"I felt like our top guys were struggling to kind of gain some traction tonight. They did have their chances, they scored on Mikko's tip and they were doing some good things, but the regular traction that I expect out of that line wasn't there. I thought maybe I flip them [and] sometimes you can get a spark, and if I didn't like it I could just move it back real quick." -- Avalanche coach Jared Bednar on splitting up his top line

 

"The only positives you want to look at is wins. Can't accept losses in this room and try to take the positives out of it. It's about winning hockey games and we didn't get the job done, so that's it." -- Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo

 

Need to know

Rantanen's point streak is his NHL career high. He has 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in the streak, and is the third Avalanche player since 2007-08 to have a point streak of 10 or more games. MacKinnon did it twice (2017-18, 2013-14) and Tyson Barrie (2017-18). … Nemeth played his 200th NHL game. … Colorado, which came in with the top-ranked power play in the NHL at 32.2 percent, was 0-for-4. … MacKinnon has 18 points (seven goals, 11 assists) in his past 10 games. … Landeskog has 13 points (five goals, eight assists) in his past 10 games. … Panthers forward Aleksander Barkov had his five-game point streak end. … Panthers forward Evgenii Dadonov, who had scored in four straight games, had his six-game point streak end. 

 

What's next

Avalanche: At the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; SUN, ALT, NHL.TV)

Panthers: Host the New York Rangers on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; FS-F, MSG 2, NHL.TV)

Video: Soderberg, Landeskog lead Avs past Panthers, 5-2

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