April 23, 2019

Nathan MacKinnon Scores In OT To Tie Series

16 April 2019, 11:57 | Henrietta Morgan

Avs, MacKinnon rally to beat Flames in OT

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Smith hasn't played a playoff game since that post-season seven years ago.

"That's why I take care of myself, so I can play in OT". MacKinnon has looked like a man on a mission at the start of the series, generating 12 shots on goal in two games.

"As good as Calgary was in Game 1, and even tonight, I thought we were one step ahead", said Avs captain Gabriel Landeskog, whose club has indeed been the better of the two in a first round series now tied 1-1.

Now is as good a time as any for Smith, who made 26 saves for his first playoff shutout in almost seven years as the Flames blanked the Colorado Avalanche 4-0 on Thursday night in Game 1 of their first-round Western Conference playoff series.

So Game 1 was fun. "I'm happy it went in", Mangiapane said.

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Mike Smith made 36 saves for Calgary after making 26 in the Game 1 shutout. Matthew Tkachuk leads Calgary with two goals, Sam Bennett has three assists and Mikael Backlund has eight shots on goal. Chants of "Smitty! Smitty!"

"We have to be better". With the game tied, the game would head to overtime, something the Avs did not have to do last season against Nashville.

NOTES: Grubauer made 28 stops for Colorado. "Down late or running into a hot goalie, we know we can win games against this team".

"It's just instinct", MacKinnon said of his shot selection.

Though overshadowed by Smith's heroics most of the night, Grubauer stopped 35 shots to continue the play that helped lift the Avs into the second wild-card spot with a furious finish to the regular season. "I didn't really think".

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The game went into overtime, and let me tell you, my heart is having a hard time taking sudden death overtime.

"Our killers did an unbelievable job to kill off all those penalties and I was able to make a couple big saves there in the second, then we go down the ice and (Mangiapane) scores a big goal for us, so obviously that's a big momentum swing in the game", Smith said.

It took until 14:25 of the second period for the game's first goal, but it was worth the wait as Mangiapane's unassisted goal was a highlight-reel effort.

Coach Bill Peters agreed the team failed to start on time - a development masked once again by Smith. Maybe those stakes explain why they're so focused right now, but either way, it seems like Colorado could make this an interesting Round 1 series.

The chaos began early with scrambles and rumbles at both ends of the ice, Smith even channeling his inner Billy Smith by offering Colorado's Derick Brassard a blocker sandwich that would earn them both roughing minors 4:34 into the first period.

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