DENVER – The last horn on Monday was accompanied by a bang – Mikko Rantanen grabbed his stick over his knee in frustration.
Johan Larsson’s early third-half goal for the Arizona Coyotes won a 3-2 decision at Ball Arena. An angry 2:14 final, which included a power play by the Colorado Avalanche, resulted in neither a goal nor an abundance of shots. The final push was derailed when Rantanen’s attempted pass slid down the ice to the empty Colorado cage.
“I am not disappointed with the effort. I’m disappointed with the result, ”said coach Jared Bednar. “We are not looking for moral victories. We’re a good ice hockey team and we have to find a way to win. “
The word rally lost its power this week. The Avalanche didn’t manage to get the offensive going until they’ve already lost 2-0. For the third time in four days they eliminated this deficit at the beginning of the third period.
Despite the goal differences, neither Bednar nor captain Gabriel Landeskog had any problems with the first half. Bednar said the pace was good, although the avalanche was “not as dangerous” as he would have liked.
“I thought we had a decent start. We had a good jump, ”said Landeskog.
“We undoubtedly have another gear.”
The 2-0 comeback trail has crossed with the absence of Nathan MacKinnon (upper body injury) and the heating up of Valeri Nichushkin, who is in the lead. Nichushkin closed the gap 2-1 in the middle of the second half, taking a chip from Nazem Kadri and sticking it in the top corner of the net. It was his third goal in three games.
Nichushkin’s days there may be limited as MacKinnon skated in a non-contact jersey on Monday morning and a return this week has been suggested.
Andre Burakovsky equalized the result in the power play with 2 and shot a shot from the target point.
While the game was tied, Arizona goalkeeper Darcy Kuemper cautiously ran away after speaking to a coach. Antti Raanta took his place and made 16 parades.
“Right now we make every goalkeeper we play look like an all-star,” said Bednar. “We can’t go on with that.”
Shortly after the move, the Avalanche could not stay on the boards twice. Larsson was the last to touch a long shot from the point that changed direction on Philipp Grubauer (11 saves).
The first goal was deflected off by a stick, Bednar said. The two lucky goals put the Coyotes within one point of the avalanche in fourth place in the West Division of the NHL.
“We were the better team tonight,” said Landeskog. “We had chances to score, we couldn’t make it.”