Read reports from Thursday’s NHL games.
Mikko Rantanen had a goal and two assists, Lars Eller added a bizarre game-changing goal as the Colorado Avalanche defeated the Ottawa Senators 5-4 on Thursday.
Cale Makar had a goal and an assist, while Valeri Nichushkin and Evan Rodrigues also scored for the Avalanche, which won a fourth straight game. Nathan MacKinnon had three assists and Jonas Johansson stopped 31 shots.
Drake Batherson, Shane Pinto, Travis Hamonic and Brady Tkachuk replied for the Senators, who suffered a fourth straight loss. Tim Stützle had three assists and Mads Sogaard stopped 25 shots.
The Avalanche took the first seven shots on goal and led 2-0 before the Senators challenged Johansson for the first time after nearly eight minutes of play.
The visitors also scored three times in the second period, taking a 5-2 lead.
Eller was credited with a goal at 18:09 of the second period. The Senators believed the Avalanche had made an illegal punt, but the referees did not call a stoppage as the puck returned near Soogard’s pad. After a few seconds, Eller took advantage of the confusion and pushed the loose puck behind the goal line.
The Senators made it interesting in the third period, but Johansson did what it took to give the Avalanche the win. He notably managed an acrobatic stop with five seconds to go on the clock.
Chris Kreider put the team ahead in the third period, then added an empty-net insurance goal, and the New York Rangers defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-2 on Thursday.
Kreider moved the ropes at 11:45 of the final period, ignoring Brian Dumoulin’s coverage to beat goaltender Tristan Jarry. Kreider then scored his 30th goal of the season with 50 seconds left on the clock.
Mika Zibanejad and Tyler Motte also scored for Rangers, who have won eight of their last 10 home games. Igor Shesterkin stopped 30 pitches.
Penguins forward Jake Guentzel also hit 30 goals in the game. Rickard Rakell was the visitors’ other goalscorer, while Jarry made 31 saves.
Penguins captain Sidney Crosby had two assists.
The Rangers now have a 10-point lead over the Penguins for third place in the Metropolitan Division.