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NHL Hockey

2
Final 1 2 3 OT SO Tot
Colorado 0 2 0 0 0 2
NY Rangers 1 1 0 0 1 3
3
4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET23:00 GMT7:00 4:00 PM MST6:00 PM EST3:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ETNaN:� BRT, October 16, 2018
Madison Square Garden, New York, New York  Attendance: 17,251

Avs aim to continue hot start vs. Rangers

Colorado Avalanche at New York Rangers

  1. The Avalanche lost in overtime to Calgary, 3-2, at home on Saturday. Despite the loss, the Avs have started with at least seven points in their first five games in back-to-back years for the first time since moving to Colorado.
  2. Nathan MacKinnon scored a goal in the loss to Calgary, giving him six goals on the season and at least one in every game. The last player in franchise history to begin a season with a goal in five straight games was Mats Sundin in 1992-93.
  3. Since 2009-10, the Avalanche are 5-2-0 on the road against the Rangers, converting 40.0 percent of their power-play opportunities while allowing New York to convert just 7.7 percent of its chances.
  4. The Rangers lost to the Oilers, 2-1, at home on Saturday. They've now opened back-to-back seasons with 1-4-0 records, the first time they've done so since the 1980-81 and 1981-82 seasons.
  5. Mika Zibanejad scored New York's lone goal against Edmonton, his first of the season. He led the Rangers with 27 goals last year, the fourth consecutive season that New York has had a different leading goal-scorer.
  6. The Avalanche have held a lead for 184:13 of their 300:46 played this season, good for 61.2 percent, the third-highest percentage in the league. The Rangers have led for just 9.9 percent of their games, third lowest in the league.

NEW YORK -- Nathan MacKinnon made history by scoring again Saturday against the Calgary Flames. A day later, nobody on the Colorado Avalanche was looking at his latest goal when they viewed the film in practice.

Instead, the Avalanche spent their final practice before a four-game road trip trying to figure out what went wrong defensively in a 3-2 overtime loss, a game where they held a two-goal lead and were outshot 31-9 after the opening period.

MacKinnon and the Avalanche hope to correct some of those defensive issues Tuesday night when they face the New York Rangers in the opener of a four-game road trip.

MacKinnon scored his sixth goal in his fifth game 11 seconds and the Avalanche held a 2-0 lead 2:40 into the game and they did little the rest of the way and settled for a point before allowing Johnny Gaudreau to score the game-winner.

"We went out and worked on D-zone coverage today and getting quick to contact and making sure we got support around the puck," Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. "I thought our intensity level was really good."

The Avalanche are off to a 3-1-1 start heading into a trip that will take them through New York, New Jersey, and Philadelphia in the next seven days.

MacKinnon has six goals during his season-opening five-game goal scoring streak and it took him 19 games to score his sixth goal. He tied the franchise record set by Mats Sundin, who scored a goal in each of his first five games for the 1992-93 Quebec Nordiques.

"I think what happened in the last two periods, we stopped playing offensive hockey," Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog said. "We stopped playing aggressive hockey, which is the way we got to play."

The Rangers are off to their second straight 1-4 start after taking a 2-1 home loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday.

Mika Zibanejad scored the lone goal for the Rangers, who matched a season-low 24 shots on goal. The Rangers held their own against Connor McDavid's line, but gave up the game-winner to McDavid during a power play 6:23 into the third.

The Rangers fell to 1-4 after rallying late to get a 3-2 overtime win over the San Jose Sharks on Thursday. They allowed 43 shots, including many on odd-man rushes.

New York allowed fewer odd-man rushes Saturday, but first-year coach David Quinn thought it came at the expense of aggressiveness on offense.

"I thought it was better," Quinn said. "Obviously, we weren't giving up the odd-man rushes that we've been giving up in the first three or four games. I thought we were more responsible in that -- we were smart and made good decisions in that regard -- but I thought in turn, we lost a little bit of our aggressive puck pursuit in the offensive zone. I think we need to do a better job of finding that balance of being aggressive and pressuring the puck without making bad decisions."

The Rangers took three penalties in the third period and are hoping to correct that area, regardless of who is in the lineup. Defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk returned from being a healthy scratch and Quinn has made other moves through the lineup so far, such as moving Pavel Buchnevich to left wing and getting rookie Brett Howden more ice time.

"It's unfortunate," Zibanejad said. "I thought we did some good things out there. We came out really well in the first 10 minutes and kind of slowed down a little bit after that. (We were) maybe a little bit too passive. I thought we had plenty of chances to put this one away. We just have to work on that."

Semyon Varlamov is expected to start for the Avalanche. He is 3-0-1 with a 1.75 goals-against average so far and last season turned in a 37-save performance in a 4-2 win at Madison Square Garden.

Henrik Lundqvist, who has a 2.03 goals-against average, is expected to start for the Rangers.

Last season, Colorado swept the season series for the first time since the 2010-11 season. MacKinnon had a goal and two assists in Colorado's two wins over the Rangers.

Updated October 15, 2018

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