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game recap

Huberdeau's two goals boost Panthers to OT win against Avalanche

Scores at 29 seconds after tying game with 1:30 left in third period

by Rick Sadowski / Independent Correspondent

Huberdeau propels Panthers to win

FLA@COL: Huberdeau scores winner after forcing OT

Jonathan Huberdeau scores the tying goal with under two minutes left in regulation and then supplies the overtime winner for the Panthers

  • 01:51 •

DENVER -- Jonathan Huberdeau scored his second goal of the game 29 seconds into overtime for the Florida Panthers in a 4-3 win against the Colorado Avalanche at Pepsi Center on Wednesday.

"I got a fortunate bounce," Huberdeau said. "Me and [Aleksander Barkov] were kind of looking for a bounce, we haven't been getting a lot of bounces lately. I saw the puck and I saw (goalie Philipp) Grubauer had his stick out, so I was going to go backhand and five-hole, and I knew it was open."

Huberdeau tied it 3-3 with 1:30 left in the third period after goalie Sergei Bobrovsky went to the bench for a sixth skater. His shot from the left hash marks went through traffic.


[WATCH: All Panthers vs. Avalanche highlights]


Colorado's Nathan MacKinnon had a goal and an assist to stretch his point streak to 12 games. He has 17 points (seven goals, 10 assists) in the streak, tying Joe Sakic for the fourth longest to begin a season in Avalanche/Quebec Nordiques history.

Barkov and Colton Sceviour scored, and Bobrovsky made 27 saves for the Panthers (6-3-4), who went 2-1-1 on a four-game road trip.

"It feels good," Huberdeau said. "It's a huge two points. I think we had a good road trip overall except Vancouver (a 7-2 loss Monday). We're starting to play more together and tonight showed the character of our team. A huge comeback and now we're going to have a stretch at home and it's going to be good to be under the sunshine."

Matt Nieto and Joonas Donskoi scored, and Grubauer made 34 saves for the Avalanche (8-2-2), who played their first game without injured forward Gabriel Landeskog.

"It's disappointing because when you're able to sort of not be completely at your best for 60 minutes and to be in a position to be up two (goals) late in the third, it's a tough point to lose," Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said.

The Avalanche took a 1-0 lead at 6:05 of the first period on Nieto's goal. Matt Calvert's shot from the left point was tipped by Pierre-Edouard Bellemare in the slot and Nieto slipped it between Bobrovsky's pads.

The Panthers tied 1-1 at 9:59 of the period on Sceviour's goal. He was between the face-off circles when he redirected Aaron Ekblad's shot from the right point.

Video: FLA@COL: Sceviour deflects in Ekblad's shot

Donskoi made it 2-1 at 19:28 of the period when he converted the rebound of MacKinnon's shot from the high slot.

MacKinnon increased the lead to 3-1 at 7:37 of the third period. His shot from just inside the blue line hit a Panthers defenseman and went in off Bobrovsky.

"I don't think we need to panic, even when we are down two goals," Huberdeau said. "We need to focus. We're that kind of team, that's when we're good and we know we can come back and win."

The Panthers closed to 3-2 on Barkov's power-play goal at 12:04. Keith Yandle shot from the left point and Barkov tipped it in from close range. It was the first goal of the season for the Panthers captain.

"I thought we've done a good job [killing penalties] and at the end of the day, they have five guys and we have four," Nieto said. "One guy is going to be open and teams are going to get their looks and unfortunately, they got a good look and capitalized. We are two goals ahead and in a really good spot at home and that's a game where we have to walk away with two points."

Video: FLA@COL: Barkov tips in power-play goal

Barkov was especially happy that his first goal was significant.

"It was nice to get a goal, but even nicer with a win," he said. "The guys battled back pretty hard and we beat a pretty good team on the road. We have a great team here, great guys and why not battle for each other and play the right way. We know we can battle back in any game."


They said it

"I thought he was great. I thought he hung in there and they had some shots that were coming, they have some heavy shooters. I thought he was effective in finding the pucks in the areas as well. He was really good." -- Panthers coach Joel Quenneville on goalie Sergei Bobrovsky

"I don't want to say we sat back, but we didn't get on pucks in the third period like we did in the second, that's for sure. They kept coming at us in waves. I just thought they were hungrier and playing a puck possession game in the offensive zone and we didn't close out enough plays. We have to be better at the defending aspect of that." -- Avalanche coach Jared Bednar

Video: FLA@COL: MacKinnon scores on shot from blue line


Need to know

Panthers forward Jayce Hawryluk left the game after he sustained an undisclosed injury on a third-period hit by Avalanche defenseman Nikita Zadorov. ... Huberdeau has seven points (four goals, three assists) in his past five games. ... MacKinnon is the fifth NHL player since 1999-2000 to begin a season with a point streak of 12 games or longer. ... Colorado forward Mikko Rantanen missed his third game because of a lower-body injury.


What's next

Panthers: Host the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday (7 p.m. ET, FS-F, FS-D+, NHL.TV)

Avalanche: Host the Dallas Stars on Friday (9 p.m. ET, ESPN+, ALT, FS-SW, NHL.TV)

Video: Huberdeau, Panthers rally to defeat Avalanche in OT

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