DENVER (KDVR) — Colorado Avalanche forward Mikko Rantanen scored a goal and had three assists against the Dallas Stars in the 5-2 win Saturday night at Ball Arena.
Nathan MacKinnon nabbed a cross-ice pass from Rantanen in the corner to put it past Stars goalie Jake Oettinger at 8:54 in the first period.
“He drove right into like the best scoring area that there is, right between the hash marks, and capitalized on it. Plus the shot was elite. It was on and off his tape,” head coach Jared Bednar said after the game.
At 6:04 in the second period, Logan O’Connor slipped past Miro Heiskanen to beat Oettinger five-hole.
Stars forward Tyler Seguin got Dallas on the board with a power-play goal at 11:54 in the second after a scramble in front of the net. But MacKinnon put the Avs back up by two with a power-play goal at the end of the second off a faceoff win pass from J.T. Compher.
It appeared the Stars pulled within one midway through the third period, but a goaltender interference challenge reversed the call on the ice keeping the Avs up 3-1.
Valeri Nichushkin made it 4-1 when he tipped in an empty-net goal on a pass from Rantanen in the third but Stars forward Joe Pavelski made it 4-2 with a pass from Robertson to get past Alexandar Georgiev at 18:44. Rantanen scored his 49th goal of the season with an empty-netter in the last seconds of the game to make the final 5-2.
The win put the Avalanche in a tie with the Stars for second place in the Central Division, while the Minnesota Wild remain a point ahead of both teams. Colorado, however, has one game in hand on both clubs.
The Avalanche face off against the Sharks in San Jose Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. Colorado shut out the Sharks for the one and only time the teams met this season.