Avalanche forwards Nathan MacKinnon and Paul Stastny each tallied a goal and three assists to lead Colorado to a 4-2 victory in Game 2 of its series with Minnesota, Saturday night in Denver. C Charlie Coyle and D Marco Scandella scored for the Wild, while G Ilya Bryzgalov made 11 saves to earn the loss, and G Darcy Kuemper stopped all 14 shots faced in relief. The series shifts to Minnesota, as Xcel Energy Center hosts Game 3 Monday at 6 p.m. CT. on FOX Sports North and KFAN 100.3 FM in Minnesota, NHL Network nationally in the U.S., and TSN and RDS in Canada.
Colorado’s empty-net goal was the first power-play goal Minnesota has allowed against the Avalanche since March 14, 2013 – a span of 21 stops that included 15 kills over eight regular-season games, four stops in Game 1 and two in Game 2. Colorado ranked T-5th in the NHL this season with a 19.8% conversion rate on the power play.
With the empty-net goal, Minnesota and Colorado played in a game decided by more than one goal for just the fifth time in their 15 all-time playoff meetings.
C Mikko Koivu netted two assists to earn his second career multi-point playoff game and won 13-of-22 faceoffs on the night (59%). After an assist in Game 1, he now has the first playoff assist streak of his career and nine points (5-4=9) in 18 career playoff games. Minnesota’s captain set a Wild single-game playoff record in Game 1 after winning 18 faceoffs (18-of-25, 72%). He finished the regular season leading all NHL players in assists since March 18 (14).
C Charlie Coyle opened the game’s scoring, 4:18 into the first period, after opening Minnesota’s scoring with his first playoff goal in Game 1. He now has four points (2-2=4) in seven career playoff games, including his second career postseason point streak. He finished the regular season with a point in nine of his last 12 games (5-5=10), earning a career-high 30 points (12-18=30) despite missing 12 games with a knee strain.
D Marco Scandella scored the sixth shorthanded goal in Wild history and now has his first career playoff point streak (1-1=2) and has four points (2-2=4) in seven career playoff games. He registered a career-high 17 points (3-14=17) in 76 games during the regular season.
LW Zach Parise assisted on Scandella’s goal and has three helpers this series. He now has 47 points (22-25=47) in 68 career playoff games. He posted 10 points (5-5=10) in the final nine games of the regular season.
D Ryan Suter assisted on Coyle’s goal to earn his third career playoff point streak, after scoring in Game 1. He has 15 points (5-10=15) in 46 career playoff games. He skated a game-high 27:38 tonight after leading all players with 31:11 TOI in Game 1.
G Ilya Bryzgalov made 11 saves in 31:59 before being replaced in net by G Darcy Kuemper, who stopped all 14 shots faced in his first appearance in the Wild net since March 27 in St. Louis, after missing Game 1 and the final seven games of the regular season with an upper-body injury.
LW Gabriel Landeskog scored twice, while C Nathan MacKinnon and C Paul Stastny also scored for Colorado. G Semyon Varlamov made 30 saves to earn the win.