Nichushkin scores 2 goals, Avalanche beat Rangers 4-2

Colorado Avalanche

New York Rangers center Ryan Strome, left, passes the puck as Colorado Avalanche right wing Valeri Nichushkin defends in the second period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

DENVER (AP) — Valeri Nichushkin had two goals, Cale Makar and Mikko Rantanen also scored and the Colorado Avalanche beat the New York Rangers 4-2 for their fifth straight win.

Nathan MacKinnon had two assists and Darcy Kuemper stopped 26 shots in Colorado’s second victory over New York in less than a week. The Avalanche beat the Rangers 7-3 at Madison Square Garden last Wednesday.

Ryan Strome and Julien Gauthier scored and Alexander Georgiev made 27 saves for New York, which has dropped two in a row and three of four following a seven-game winning streak that capped an 11-1 surge.

Nazem Kadri returned from a two-game absence with two assists and has a team-leading 36 points for Colorado.

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