DENVER | Nathan MacKinnon spoke about a clash between Avalanche and Lightning between the best two teams in the NHL. MacKinnon is not only a great hockey player, he is also a good analyst
• Also read: NHL: Makar and Vasilevskiy as Conn-Smythe Trophy contenders
• Also read: He brings victory to the Avalanche: “I just had to shoot at goal” – Andre Burakovsky
• Also read: Game #1 of the Stanley Cup Finals: “The Right Team Won” – Jon Cooper
For this first game of the Stanley Cup Finals, the Avalanche achieved a dramatic 4-3 overtime win over the Lightning yesterday at the Ball Arena.
Andre Burakovsky scored the winning goal in the 83rd second of the fourth period. The Austrian used a perfect pass from Valeri Nichushkin to defeat Andrei Vasilevskiy with a quick one-timer. There was absolutely nothing the Lightning goalie could do about this game.
In the shadow of a team full of talented players, Nichushkin pulled the reflectors towards him during that first encounter of the finals. The former Dallas Stars put on a strong game with one goal and one assist, but also six shots on target.
“Val (Valeri) is strong as a horse, everyone can see that,” said defender Bowen Byram. he works so hard He is doing well and it is difficult to counter. He is also very good at checking in advance. He’s been incredible since the start of the playoffs and had a very big game again tonight. »
Mainly deployed on the right wing alongside Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog, Nichushkin spent a crazy amount of time in opposition territory. He finished the game with eleven attempted shots.
“Nichushkin received a huge reward with an excellent assist for our winning goal,” said winger Mikko Rantanen, author of two assists in the triumph. He’s scored a goal, spent valuable time down-man and fired tons of shots. He’s really an important player for us. »
As with the Western finals against the Oilers, MacKinnon also recalled that he is on a mission to earn a first ring. He only got one assist in the archway, but he made several spectacular games thanks to his speed and incredible anticipation.
The Avalanche didn’t flinch despite the return of the Stanley Cup winner of the past two years. After a break, Jared Bednar’s team appeared to be alone on the ice with a 3-1 lead, but one should never make the mistake of assuming the Lightning are dead.
Nikita Kucherov rang the guests’ alarm clock in the second half. Number 86 put the NHL’s best defensive pairing, Devon Toews and Cale Makar, to sleep with a clever feint before delivering a precision pass for Ondrej Palat. The Czech easily outsmarted Darcy
Kuemper to this game.
Less than a minute later, Mikhail Sergachev also scored. 3 to 1 was 3 to 3.
Despite the Lightning’s quick comeback, the Avalanche controlled their emotions to stay in the game.
Jon Cooper said after Rangers’ elimination in Game 6 of Saturday’s Eastern Finals in Tampa there was a good chance of seeing Brayden Point back in uniform by the start of the Finals. Cooper hadn’t lied.
Point was actually in uniform in that first game against the Avalanche. He found himself in the center of the third row alongside Ross Colton and Nick Paul. With a lower body injury in Game 7 of the first round against the Maple Leafs in Toronto, Point had missed the last ten games.
1 column: Gabriel Landeskog (9) (Rantanen, Byram) 7:47
2 column: Valery Nichushkin (6) (Mackinnon) 9:23
3-TB: Nick Paul (4) (Hedman, period) 12:26
4 column: Artturi Lehkonen (7) (Rantanen, Landeskog) AN-17:31
Penalties: Manson (Col) 5:07, Sergachev (TB) 15:53, Cirelli (TB) 16:20
5-TB: Ondrej Palat (9) (Kucherov, McDonagh) 12:51
6-TB: Mikhail Sergachev (2) (Hagel, Cirelli) 13:39
Penalties: Maroon (TB) 3:41, Johnson (Col) 3:41, Bench (Col) (cleaned by Newhook) 6:28
Penalties: OConnor (Col) 5:48, Maroon (TB) 18:36
7 column: Andre Burakovsky (2) (Nichushkin, Compher) 1:23
Punishment: No punishment
Shoot the net
Tampa Bay 8-9-5-1-23 Colorado 15-10-12-1-38
TB: Andrei Vasilevskiy (P, 12-6), Col: Darcy Kuemper (G, 7-2)
TB: 0 to 3, column: 1 to 3
Gord Dwyer, Kelly Sutherland
Steve Barton, Ryan Daisy