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game recap

Avalanche top Predators for sixth straight win

Francouz makes 30 saves for Colorado, which is 8-0-0 in past eight on road

by Robby Stanley / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

Landeskog opens the scoring

COL@NSH: Landeskog roofs a wrist shot to open scoring

Gabriel Landeskog skates in and lifts a wrist shot past Juuse Saros to give the Avalanche a 1-0 lead in the 2nd period

  • 00:39 •

NASHVILLE -- The Colorado Avalanche won their eighth straight game on the road, and sixth straight overall, with a 3-2 victory against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Saturday.

Erik Johnson had a goal and an assist, and Pavel Francouz made 30 saves for the Avalanche (39-18-7), whose eight-game road winning streak is the longest in Colorado/Quebec Nordiques history.

The Avalanche are three points behind the St. Louis Blues for first place in the Central Division and Western Conference.

"We've just been really clicking," Johnson said. "The road has been good to us. I think that's just a sign of a team that really enjoys each other, gets along and has a lot of fun together. You spend a lot of time on the bus and on the plane, going to dinner, going to movies or having beers together or whatever … and I think that just makes it that much better for us on the road when you enjoy each other's company and you want to play that hard for the guy next to you."

 

[WATCH: All Avalanche vs. Predators highlights]

 

Juuse Saros made 28 saves for Nashville (32-24-8), which had won three straight and remained tied with the Winnipeg Jets and Arizona Coyotes for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference.

"I think anytime you don't win the game you always want to see more, but I think we had a pretty strong effort," Predators coach John Hynes said. "I think [Saros] played very well. I thought [Francouz] played very well. We just didn't find enough ways to be able to get the puck in the back of the net."

Video: COL@NSH: Kaut wires home wrist shot from the slot

Gabriel Landeskog gave Colorado a 1-0 lead at 13:23 of the second period, scoring top shelf from a sharp angle below the left circle.

"I was able to get a step and kind of get in between two guys," Landeskog said. "Saros is a really good goalie, but you get around the net and as a smaller guy, has to put his shoulders down and then there's sometimes room up top. I got a little lucky there. I don't think it was in by much, but I'll take that."

Martin Kaut pushed the lead to 2-0 at 15:38 of the second from the high slot after Tyson Jost's pass redirected to him off the stick of Viktor Arvidsson.

Arvidsson cut it to 2-1 at 14:40 of the third period on a breakaway after Cale Makar whiffed on a shot from in close for Colorado.

Nashville appeared to tie it 2-2 at 16:46, but the officials determined that Colin Blackwell interfered with Francouz prior to the goal.

"It doesn't really matter if I'm satisfied because the call is what it is," Hynes said. "I can disagree or not, but it's over now. I think you have to understand what happens in those situations and how to be able to respond."

Johnson scored an empty-net goal to make it 3-1 at 19:03 of the third period. It was his 300th NHL point.

"I used to be known a little bit more for my offense," Johnson said. "Not so much anymore, but nonetheless, milestones are fun and even more fun when it's in a win. It's cool. That's not why you play the game, but you play long enough and you're around long enough and those things start to add up."

Calle Jarnkrok scored for the Predators to make it 3-2 with 1.7 seconds remaining in regulation.

Video: COL@NSH: Arvidsson beats Francouz with wrist shot

 

They said it

"It's good for all of us. We're playing really well lately and we keep getting points, which is huge in the standings. We keep chasing St. Louis, and I really hope we play like this in the next game again." -- Avalanche goalie Pavel Francouz 

"I think at some points we have, but I still think that's another area for us that we're trying to improve and get more, where you have opportunities to be able to possess the puck, shoot, recover, get seconds and extend offensive zone shifts more. I think the last couple games we had some parts of it, but it is something that we are addressing and trying to get a little bit better at here." -- Predators coach John Hynes on if he's happy with his team's offensive zone time 

 

Need to know

Jost has four points (two goals, two assists) in a three-game point streak. … Predators defenseman Ryan Ellis had two assists to extend his point streak to four games (one goal, seven assists). ... Predators defenseman Roman Josi had two assists.

 

What's next

Avalanche: At the Detroit Red Wings on Monday (7:30 p.m. ET; NHLN, FS-D, ATL, NHL.TV)

Predators: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Monday (8 p.m. ET; ESPN+, SN, TVAS, FS-TN, NHL.TV)

Video: Landeskog, Kaut lift Avalanche to 3-2 win

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