DENVER (AP) — Neal Pionk scored his second goal of the game 31 seconds into overtime and the Winnipeg Jets regrouped after squandering a two-goal lead to beat the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 on Wednesday night.
Pionk’s slap shot from the right side momentarily froze goaltender Alexandar Georgiev and nicked off the post to go in. It was Pionk’s first career overtime goal.
“Shoot hard in case you hit the puck,” the defenseman cracked. “I was going far side. I got a little lucky, but it was a good shot.”
The winning goal was set up by Mason Appleton in the other end, when he kept Nathan MacKinnon away from the puck along the boards. Appleton then fed the puck ahead to Pionk.
“It doesn’t go unnoticed,” Pionk said about Appleton’s play. “He used his big body, made a nice little play to me, and I put it in the net.”
Sam Gagner and Cole Perfetti also had goals for the Jets, who finish a difficult back-to-back with a game at Vegas on Thursday night. Connor Hellebuyck made 30 saves.
Leading 3-1 in the second period, Winnipeg saw Mikko Rantanen and Valeri Nichushkin score 2:01 apart to tie it. Rantanen led the comeback for Colorado with two goals and an assist in the second.
“They’re the defending Stanley Cup champions, so they’re going to push back, right?” Pionk said. “They scored a couple goals, we broke down a few times, but overall in the third I thought we responded well.”
Nichushkin has scored in all four games this season. Rantanen’s two-goal night gives him 168 for his career. He moved into 10th place on the franchise goals list.
Hellebuyck kept the Jets in the game late by turning back a tricky snap shot from Alex Newhook and then another from Artturi Lehkonen. The Jets were outshot in the final period by a 9-5 margin.
“They were skating faster,” Rantanen said. “They were faster on the loose pucks, just winning battles. I think we were just not moving as we should and as we did in the second and the third. Our biggest strength is skating. We didn’t do it in the first.”
That’s because the Jets found a way to neutralize the speed of Colorado in the first period by controlling the tempo. Gagner had a power-play goal and Pionk added another, but it could’ve been more than a two-goal cushion, if not for several split-second pad saves by Georgiev, the newest Avalanche goaltender.
“You’ve got to be assertive,” Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said. “That’s a hard-working team over there, a deep team, especially their forward group. To me, we weren’t skating and we weren’t engaged enough to start.”
The Jets are 2-4-4 in their last 10 at Colorado.
“It’s huge,” Appleton said of the win after his two-assist night. “Stanley Cup winners right there.”
Captain Gabriel Landeskog will be sidelined approximately 12 weeks after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery Tuesday in Minnesota.
“Started bugging him when he started training and getting back on the ice,” Bednar explained.
Landeskog sat out the final 23 games last season after undergoing knee surgery. He returned in time for the playoffs and had 11 goals and 11 assists to help the Avalanche win the franchise’s third Stanley Cup title.
THIS & THAT
Avalanche forward Martin Kaut was recalled from the Colorado Eagles of the American Hockey League. Ben Meyers was reassigned to the Eagles. … Jets defenseman Dylan DeMelo played in his 400th NHL game. … Georgiev made 24 saves. … Rantanen is averaging 1.14 points per game during the month of October over his career, according to NHL Stats.
Jets: At Vegas to complete the first of 12 back-to-back sets this season.
Avalanche: Host Seattle on Friday before playing the next day in Vegas.
Thatcher Demko injury Vancouver Canucks – TSN
Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko suffered an apparent lower-body injury in the first period of Thursday’s game against the Florida Panthers and did not return.
Demko was helped off the ice and left the game after a sequence near the end of the frame where the Panthers got their third goal of the period. Demko stopped two shots off the rush before doubling over on the third attempt favouring the upper side of his right leg.
Spencer Martin replaced the injured Demko, who allowed three goals on 16 shots prior to departing. Martin allowed two goals on 15 shots in relief in an eventual 5-1 loss.
After the game, head coach Bruce Boudreau did not have an update on Demko.
The 26-year-old Demko has a 3.81 goals-against average and .885 save percentage in 14 games this season. This is his sixth season in Vancouver after being selected in the second round (No. 36 overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft.
The Canucks will be back in action Saturday at home against the Arizona Coyotes.
Canadiens @ Flames Top Six Minutes: All Out Allen – Habs Eyes on the Prize
For our new readers and members, the Top Six Minutes is a continuation of the discussion in the game thread. We try to keep it light and entertaining. Full recaps are up the morning after every game.
- Can’t score less than Tuesday night, right?
- Hoffman on IR means Pitlick being called up to the wamth of NHL again.
- MSL deploying a seven-eleven tonight. Seven d-men and just eleven attackers.
- Slaf elevated to the second line? I like it.
Can’t score less than Tuesday night, right?
- It took literally thirteen seconds for that prediction to tome true.
- Sean Monahan playing “the ghost of Christmas” past on a breakaway, forcing Markström out of his net and our first overall selection follows up and picks up the rebound like a seasoned vet.
- Quite the composure there from Slafkovsky.
- Fourth of the season for Juraj. His first since 6 November.
- Jordan Harris to the box of shame for hooking Dube.
- The lead stands tall.
- Otherwise, how ‘bout that Jake Allen huh?
- Former Flame Monahan leads former Hab Tyler Toffoli on points after period one.
- 0 for 6 on the power play against the Sharks. Here we go again. The bread muncher Mangiapane to the box.
- A goal would be nice. But I guess that’s too much to ask for.
- Apparently it was -30 in Calgary tonight.
- And yes, I’m talking about the weather and not Evgenii Dadonov’s plus-minus statistics.
- And here I am, thinking it’s cold when it’s plus five in Zagreb.
- Habs survive another penalty kill, with Xhek(w)aj(faj) in the box.
- Slaf hits the post on a breakaway.
- Truly great to see him gaining momentum with his pace and puck control.
- Elias Lindholm ties the contest up at one-a-piece with 29 seconds left of period two.
- Should have been an interference call on Lindholm in the lead-up to the goal, n’est-ce pas?
- Harris penalized again. This time an unnecessary dealy of game-call.
- Toffoli does his best to haunt his former team as well, but David Savard with a quality block and the puck ricochets off the crossbar.
- Five minutes into the third. Habs are getting outshot 14-34.
- Weird sequence here. Josh Anderson swats at a puck after the referees blow it down for an icing.
- Markström disapproves of the swat and swats at Anderson as he goes by.
- Anderson disapproves of Markström being all Swedish and tall.
- And Mangiapane jumps in to defend his disapproving goalie before Anderson disapproves any more of that.
- Conclusion: Mangiapane can eat bread for an additional two minutes in the penalty box as he gets called for roughing.
- Nice work, Josh! Well planned.
- Although, to quote our managing editor: “Unfortunately, it now results in a power play.”
- Was just thinking: “Hasn’t it been too long (it’s all relative, it’s been nine days) since Caufield scored now?”
- He rips one on the man advantage and Montreal regains their lead.
- Apparently, this was Caufield’s 100th regular season NHL game.
- His stats so far: 40 goals, 30 assists.
- Oh, and 12 penalty minutes, not to forget.
- Who got another assist in his former house? Boogaloo, Sean Monahan.
- Backlund trips up his fellow Mike (Matheson) resulting in another Canadiens power play.
- You think they could do it twice in one night? Getouttahere.
- The Habs create little and instead takes a penalty of their own, for too many men on the ice.
- All while Calgary gets a three-on-one and Slaf takes a puck to the face. It’s an action packed night, this one.
- Jake Allen is playing like a man possessed tonight. 42 stops and counting.
- Make that 44.
- Make that a road victory.
- On we go to the culture capital of the world: Edmonton, AB.
EOTP 3 Stars
3) This is great news for this western road trip
2) There’s a lot of potential here
1) I think every part of his body got hit with a puck tonight
2022 FIFA World Cup: What we learned as Canada bows out in loss to Morocco – Sportsnet.ca
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