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Avalanche Take Comfortable 3-0 Western Conference Finals lead over Oilers

Colorado is close to making its first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 2001. (Author: Gardener)

Avalanche Take ComfortableT. Compher off the hook for a penalty with a key save from Connor McDavid. A few seconds later, Compher took Rogers Place's life - putting the Colorado Avalanche on the verge of the Stanley Cup Finals. Compher came from the box to give Colorado a 7-18 lead and the Avalanche defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals. Just three minutes after Ryan McLeod leveled it for Edmonton for bringing down Leon Draisaitl, Compher ran from the box, punched defender Evan Bouchard for control down the boards and found between the legs of goalie Mike Smith. Valeri Nichushkin scored twice for Colorado, Mikko Rantanen had an empty net with 30 seconds left and Francouz made 27 saves. Francouz came on in the middle of Colorado's 8-6 Game 1 win when Darcy Kuemper suffered an upper-body injury and made 24 saves in a 4-0 win for his second career playoff shutout on Thursday night. In Game 3 he made the big stop at McDavid to tie it before Compher scored. "Frankie's quick and got over there and made a great stop," said Colorado forward Nathan MacKinnon. McLeod tied it at 2 at 7:34 of the third, going the length of the ice and beating Francouz with a snap from the high slot. McDavid opened the scoring for Edmonton in 38 seconds. "Our goal is the same as today, which is to win a hockey game," said Jay Woodcroft, Edmonton caretaker coach. Game 4 takes place in Edmonton on Monday night, with Colorado just one game away from making the Stanley Cup finals. "Obviously a big win, but the job isn't done yet," said captain Gabriel Landeskog. After McDavid's quick goal, Edmonton killed Evander Kane just 28 seconds after McDavid's goal with a five-minute penalty for boarding Nazim Kadri and again halted the Avalanche power play mid-period after Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse was asked to to shoot the puck over the goal glass. Kadri was injured in Kane's hit and did not return. Coach Jared Bednar has Kadri ruled out for at least the rest of the series, if not longer. It's the most dangerous shot in hockey.” Nichushkin scored after two lucky deflections to put Colorado ahead. He connected it at 3:48 in the first period when his center pass was deflected off Nurse. Then, at 4:37 a.m. of the second, Nichushkin controlled a deflection of a shot from where MacKinnon and fired a wrist shot through Bouchard's legs and past the shielded Smith. "Val is a big part of our team and our attacking game and our control game and helps in all areas of the game," Landeskog said. "Obviously tonight he was a force and has two big goals for us and I thought he did a great job in the pre-check and in the neutral zone, staying above his top players and not giving them much space. Colorado killed MacKinnon's trip penalty late in the second, and Edmonton stopped the Avalanche's power play again early in the third when Draisaitl retired for high-sticking. Only four NHL teams have ever come back from a 3-0 deficit and won a seven-game streak.

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Avalanche beat the Oilers 4-2 to take a 3-0 lead in the series

J (Author: Gardener)

AvalancheAvalanche Oilers Hockey Colorado Avalanche left wing J. Avalanche Oilers Hockey Colorado Avalanche left wing J. T. Compher (37) scores on Edmonton Oilers goalie Mike Smith (41) as Leon Draisaitl (29) defends during the third period of Game 3 of the NHL Hockey Stanley Cup -Western Conference Playoffs Finals, Saturday, June 4, 2022, in Edmonton, Alberta. T. Compher (37) scores on Edmonton Oilers goalie Mike Smith (41) while Leon Draisaitl (29) during the third period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs on Saturday, June 4, 2022 , defended in Edmonton , Alberta. (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP) (JASON FRANSON) (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP) (JASON FRANSON) EDMONTON, Alberta - (AP) - Pavel Francouz unhooked J.T. Compher for a penalty with a key save You on Connor McDavid. A few seconds later, Compher took Rogers Place's life - putting the Colorado Avalanche on the verge of the Stanley Cup Finals. Compher came out of the box to give Colorado a 7-18 lead, and the Avalanche defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals. Just three minutes after Ryan McLeod equalized for Edmonton for tripping Leon Draisaitl, Compher sped out of the box, beating defender Evan Bouchard for control along the cushions and striking between the legs of goaltender Mike Smith. Valeri Nichushkin scored twice for Colorado, Mikko Rantanen had an empty net with 30 seconds left and Francouz made 27 saves. Francouz came on in the middle of Colorado's 8-6 Game 1 win when Darcy Kuemper suffered an upper-body injury and made 24 saves in a 4-0 win for his second career playoff shutout on Thursday night. In Game 3 he made the big stop at McDavid to tie it before Compher scored. "Frankie's quick and got over there and made a great stop," said Colorado forward Nathan MacKinnon. McLeod tied it at 2 at 7:34 of the third, going the length of the ice and beating Francouz with a snap from the high slot. McDavid opened the scoring for Edmonton in 38 seconds. Smith made 39 saves. "Our goal is the same as today, which is to win a hockey game," said Jay Woodcroft, Edmonton caretaker coach. Game 4 takes place in Edmonton on Monday night, with Colorado just one game away from making the Stanley Cup finals. "Obviously a big win, but the job isn't done yet," said captain Gabriel Landeskog. After McDavid's quick goal, Edmonton killed Evander Kane just 28 seconds after McDavid's goal with a five-minute penalty for boarding Nazem Kadri, stopping the Avalanche power play again mid-period after Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse was asked to throw the puck over the goal scoring glass. Kadri was injured in Kane's hit and did not return. It's the most dangerous shot in hockey.” Nichushkin scored two lucky deflections to give Colorado the lead. He equalized at 3:48 in the first period when his center pass deflected off Nurse. Then at 4:37 in the second , Nichushkin controlled a shot from MacKinnon and fired a wrist shot through Bouchard's legs and past the shielded Smith." Val is a big part of our team and our offensive play and control play and helps in all areas of the game," said Landeskog. "Of course he was a force tonight and scored two big goals for us and I think he did a great job in the pre-check and in the neutral zone, staying above his top players and not giving them much Place. Colorado killed MacKinnon's trip penalty late in the second, and Edmonton stopped the Avalanche's power play again early in the third when Draisaitl retired for high-sticking. Only four NHL teams have ever come back from a 3-0 deficit and won a seven-game streak. "Every play counts," Smith said. Copyright 2022 The Associated Press.

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'Boring' Avalanche now only 1 win from the cup final

The Avalanche improved to 6-0 ahead of Colorado in Saturday's playoffs with a 4-2 win over the Oilers in Edmonton, a result that kept them as the only postseason team not to lose an away game and give them one Victory brought out the Stanley Cup final. (Author: Gardener)

only 1The Colorado Avalanche moved one win away from the Stanley Cup Finals with a 4-2 win in Saturday's Game 3 against the Edmonton Oilers and did what they do best: win away. The Avalanche achieved a perfect 6-0 lead in the playoffs over Denver, the only team in the NHL postseason not to lose an away game. Star center Nathan MacKinnon said that instead of wowing their home fans, the Avalanche thrive on sucking the fun out of games on the street. Just play a good two-way game," he said. "There's no show to pull off when we're out and it just feels like we're playing the right way." That said, the Avalanche are averaging 5.00 goals per game and 35.3% of their power plays away, leading the NHL playoffs. Defensively, their 2.50 goals-against-away average is the best among the four remaining teams. I don't know if we're a little bit slower or something [on the road], but I just feel like everyone's kind of in a good place," MacKinnon said. It was never clearer than towards the end of the third period, as the Avalanche attempted to maintain a one-goal lead while the Oilers drew goaltender Mike Smith for an extra attacker.The Avalanche blocked three shots and then let winger Mikko Rantanen take the puck from the Oilers before scoring an empty net to round the "I thought it was amazing even before Mikko," said coach Jared Bednar of his side's defence, Connor McDavid made his mark after just 38 seconds when he shot from goalkeeper Pavel Francouz (27 saves) for an early lead Seconds later, the game took a turn when Edmonton's Evander Kane checked Avalanche center Nazem Kadri from behind for a five-minute major penalty – but no misconduct of the game, although Kadri was injured during the game. Bednar said that Kadri will be absent from the series "at least, if not longer." The Oilers killed the penalty kick and the Avalanche went 5-0 on man advantage for the game. Valeri Nichushkin then scored two straight goals for the Avalanche - one at 16:12 in the first period, another at 4:37 in the second period - to give Colorado a 2-1 lead. Edmonton's Ryan McLeod scored from long-range after 7:34 of the third period to equalize, in a sequence that began with Avalanche forward Nico Sturm snatching his racquet out of his hands in the neutral zone without the a penalty was called. The Oilers were on a power play with just under 10 minutes to go in the third half when J. Compher, who was playing in Kadri's place in the lineup after his injury, came into the Oilers' zone and missed a shot for Smith to make it a 3-2 lead. It was Compher's fifth goal in his last four games. We're going to need him to make a difference going forward," MacKinnon said. The Oilers drew Smith, but Rantanen finished the game for the win and the 3-0 lead. MacKinnon said the Avalanche aren't even thinking about the series advantage , even though we're just one win away from the Stanley Cup final. We'll go into the next game 0-0," he said. Game 4 of the series takes place in Edmonton on Monday night.

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Avalanche beat the Oilers 4-2 to take a 3-0 lead in the series

J (Author: Gardener)

AvalancheAvalanche Oilers Hockey Colorado Avalanche left wing J. Avalanche Oilers Hockey Colorado Avalanche left wing J. T. Compher (37) scores on Edmonton Oilers goalie Mike Smith (41) as Leon Draisaitl (29) defends during the third period of Game 3 of the NHL Hockey Stanley Cup -Western Conference Playoffs Finals, Saturday, June 4, 2022, in Edmonton, Alberta. T. Compher (37) scores on Edmonton Oilers goalie Mike Smith (41) while Leon Draisaitl (29) during the third period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs on Saturday, June 4, 2022 , defended in Edmonton , Alberta. (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP) (JASON FRANSON) (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP) (JASON FRANSON) EDMONTON, Alberta - (AP) - Pavel Francouz unhooked J.T. Compher for a penalty with a key save You on Connor McDavid. A few seconds later, Compher took Rogers Place's life - putting the Colorado Avalanche on the verge of the Stanley Cup Finals. Compher came out of the box to give Colorado a 7-18 lead, and the Avalanche defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals. Just three minutes after Ryan McLeod equalized for Edmonton for tripping Leon Draisaitl, Compher sped out of the box, beating defender Evan Bouchard for control along the cushions and striking between the legs of goaltender Mike Smith. Valeri Nichushkin scored twice for Colorado, Mikko Rantanen had an empty net with 30 seconds left and Francouz made 27 saves. Francouz came on in the middle of Colorado's 8-6 Game 1 win when Darcy Kuemper suffered an upper-body injury and made 24 saves in a 4-0 win for his second career playoff shutout on Thursday night. In Game 3 he made the big stop at McDavid to tie it before Compher scored. "Frankie's quick and got over there and made a great stop," said Colorado forward Nathan MacKinnon. McLeod tied it at 2 at 7:34 of the third, going the length of the ice and beating Francouz with a snap from the high slot. McDavid opened the scoring for Edmonton in 38 seconds. Smith made 39 saves. "Our goal is the same as today, which is to win a hockey game," said Jay Woodcroft, Edmonton caretaker coach. Game 4 takes place in Edmonton on Monday night, with Colorado just one game away from making the Stanley Cup finals. "Obviously a big win, but the job isn't done yet," said captain Gabriel Landeskog. After McDavid's quick goal, Edmonton killed Evander Kane just 28 seconds after McDavid's goal with a five-minute penalty for boarding Nazem Kadri, stopping the Avalanche power play again mid-period after Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse was asked to throw the puck over the goal scoring glass. Kadri was injured in Kane's hit and did not return. It's the most dangerous shot in hockey.” Nichushkin scored two lucky deflections to give Colorado the lead. He equalized at 3:48 in the first period when his center pass deflected off Nurse. Then at 4:37 in the second , Nichushkin controlled a shot from MacKinnon and fired a wrist shot through Bouchard's legs and past the shielded Smith." Val is a big part of our team and our offensive play and control play and helps in all areas of the game," said Landeskog. "Of course he was a force tonight and scored two big goals for us and I think he did a great job in the pre-check and in the neutral zone, staying above his top players and not giving them much Place. Colorado killed MacKinnon's trip penalty late in the second, and Edmonton stopped the Avalanche's power play again early in the third when Draisaitl retired for high-sticking. Only four NHL teams have ever come back from a 3-0 deficit and won a seven-game streak. "Every play counts," Smith said. Copyright 2022 The Associated Press.

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Avalanche beat the Oilers 4-2 to take a 3-0 lead in the series

A few seconds later, Compher took Rogers Place's life - putting the Colorado Avalanche on the verge of the Stanley Cup Finals. Compher came from the box to give Colorado a 7-18 lead and the Avalanche defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals.... (Author: Gardener)

AvalancheT. Compher (37) scores on Edmonton Oilers goalie Mike Smith (41) while Leon Draisaitl (29) during the third period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs on Saturday, June 4, 2022 , defended in Edmonton , Alberta. T. Compher off the hook for a penalty with a key save from Connor McDavid. A few seconds later, Compher took Rogers Place's life - putting the Colorado Avalanche on the verge of the Stanley Cup Finals. Compher came out of the box to give Colorado a 7-18 lead, and the Avalanche defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals. Just three minutes after Ryan McLeod equalized for Edmonton for tripping Leon Draisaitl, Compher sped out of the box, beating defender Evan Bouchard for control along the cushions and striking between the legs of goaltender Mike Smith. Valeri Nichushkin scored twice for Colorado, Mikko Rantanen had an empty net with 30 seconds left and Francouz made 27 saves. Francouz came on in the middle of Colorado's 8-6 Game 1 win when Darcy Kuemper suffered an upper-body injury and made 24 saves in a 4-0 win for his second career playoff shutout on Thursday night. In Game 3 he made the big stop at McDavid to tie it before Compher scored. "Frankie's quick and got over there and made a great stop," said Colorado forward Nathan MacKinnon. Colorado Avalanche left wing J.T. Compher (37) celebrates his goal against the Edmonton Oilers with Bowen Byram (4) during the third period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup Playoffs, Saturday, Jan June 2022, in Edmonton, Alberta. McLeod tied it at 2 at 7:34 of the third, going the length of the ice and beating Francouz with a snap from the high slot. McDavid opened the scoring for Edmonton in 38 seconds. "Our goal is the same as today, which is to win a hockey game," said Jay Woodcroft, Edmonton caretaker coach. Colorado Avalanche's Valeri Nichushkin (13) celebrates his goal as Edmonton Oilers Darnell Nurse (25) during the first period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs, Saturday, June 4, 2022, in Edmonton running towards the bank. alberta (Amber Bracken/The Canadian Press via AP) Game 4 is Monday night in Edmonton, and Colorado is one game away from making the Stanley Cup finals. "Obviously a big win, but the job isn't done yet," said captain Gabriel Landeskog. After McDavid's quick goal, Edmonton killed Evander Kane just 28 seconds after McDavid's goal with a five-minute penalty for boarding Nazem Kadri, stopping the Avalanche power play again mid-period after Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse was asked to throw the puck over the goal scoring glass. Kadri was injured in Kane's hit and did not return. Colorado Avalanche players celebrate a goal against Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) during the first period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs, Saturday, June 4, 2022, in Edmonton, Alberta. It's the most dangerous shot in hockey.” Nichushkin scored two lucky deflections to give Colorado the lead. He equalized at 3:48 in the first period when his center pass deflected off Nurse. Then at 4:37 in the second , Nichushkin controlled a shot from MacKinnon and fired a wrist shot through Bouchard's legs and past the shielded Smith." Val is a big part of our team and our offensive play and control play and helps in all areas of the game," said Landeskog. "Of course he was a force tonight and scored two big goals for us and I think he did a great job in the pre-check and in the neutral zone, staying above his top players and not giving them much Place. Colorado Avalanche's Gabriel Landeskog (92), Valeri Nichushkin (13) and Nathan MacKinnon (29) celebrate a goal while Edmonton Oilers' Evan Bouchard (75) during the second period of Game 3 of the NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs of the Western Conference, Saturday, June 4, 2022, in Edmonton, Alberta. Colorado killed MacKinnon's trip penalty late in the second, and Edmonton stopped the Avalanche's power play again early in the third when Draisaitl retired for high-sticking. Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (97) celebrates scoring against the Colorado Avalanche with left wing Evander Kane (91) and defenseman Evan Bouchard (75) during the first period of Game 3 of the NHL Hockey Stanley Cup Playoffs - Western Conference Finals, Saturday, June 4, 2022 in Edmonton, Alberta. Only four NHL teams have ever come back from a 3-0 deficit and won a seven-game streak. Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (97) celebrates his goal against the Colorado Avalanche during the first period of Game 3 of the Western Conference NHL Hockey Stanley Cup playoffs, Saturday, June 4, 2022, in Edmonton, Alberta. (via AP Jason Franson/The Canadian Press) (via AP Jason Franson/The Canadian Press) (via AP Jason Franson/The Canadian Press) (via AP Jason Franson/The Canadian Press) (via AP Jason Franson/The Canadian Press) (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP) "Every game counts," Smith said.

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Avalanche beat the Oilers 4-2 to take a 3-0 lead in the series

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) -- Pavel Francouz took J.T. Compher off the hook for a penalty with a key save from Connor McDavid. Compher came in from the box too (Author: Gardener)

AvalancheT. Compher off the hook for a penalty with a key save from Connor McDavid. A few seconds later, Compher took Rogers Place's life - putting the Colorado Avalanche on the verge of the Stanley Cup Finals. Compher came from the box to give Colorado a 7-18 lead and the Avalanche defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals. Just three minutes after Ryan McLeod leveled it for Edmonton for bringing down Leon Draisaitl, Compher ran from the box, punched defender Evan Bouchard for control down the boards and found between the legs of goalie Mike Smith. Valeri Nichushkin scored twice for Colorado, Mikko Rantanen had an empty net with 30 seconds left and Francouz made 27 saves. Francouz came on in the middle of Colorado's 8-6 Game 1 win when Darcy Kuemper suffered an upper-body injury and made 24 saves in a 4-0 win for his second career playoff shutout on Thursday night. In Game 3 he made the big stop at McDavid to tie it before Compher scored. "Frankie's quick and got over there and made a great stop," said Colorado forward Nathan MacKinnon. McLeod tied it at 2 at 7:34 of the third, going the length of the ice and beating Francouz with a snap from the high slot. McDavid opened the scoring for Edmonton in 38 seconds. "Our goal is the same as today, which is to win a hockey game," said Jay Woodcroft, Edmonton caretaker coach. Game 4 takes place in Edmonton on Monday night, with Colorado just one game away from making the Stanley Cup finals. "Obviously a big win, but the job isn't done yet," said captain Gabriel Landeskog. After McDavid's quick goal, Edmonton killed Evander Kane just 28 seconds after McDavid's goal with a five-minute penalty for boarding Nazim Kadri and again halted the Avalanche power play mid-period after Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse was asked to to shoot the puck over the goal glass. Kadri was injured in Kane's hit and did not return. Coach Jared Bednar has Kadri ruled out for at least the rest of the series, if not longer. It's the most dangerous shot in hockey.” Nichushkin scored after two lucky deflections to put Colorado ahead. He connected it at 3:48 in the first period when his center pass was deflected off Nurse. Then, at 4:37 a.m. of the second, Nichushkin controlled a deflection of a shot from where MacKinnon and fired a wrist shot through Bouchard's legs and past the shielded Smith. "Val is a big part of our team and our attacking game and our control game and helps in all areas of the game," Landeskog said. "Obviously tonight he was a force and has two big goals for us and I thought he did a great job in the pre-check and in the neutral zone, staying above his top players and not giving them much space. Colorado killed MacKinnon's trip penalty late in the second, and Edmonton stopped the Avalanche's power play again early in the third when Draisaitl retired for high-sticking. Only four NHL teams have ever come back from a 3-0 deficit and won a seven-game streak.

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Avalanche moves within a game of the Stanley Cup Finals, defeating Edmonton 4-2 in Game 3

A commitment to its "next-man-up" philosophy helped the Avalanche secure victory for the Stanley Cup Finals here on Saturday night. (Author: Gardener)

AvalancheColorado Avalanche left wing Gabriel Landeskog (92) greets Colorado Avalanche right wing Valeri Nichushkin (13) in celebration after NichushkinÕs goal against Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) in the second period during the third game of NHL Stanley Cup Western Conference Finals at Rogers Venue June 04, 2022. EDMONTON, Alberta – A commitment to its “next man up” philosophy helped the Avalanche win a place in the Stanley Cup Finals here on Saturday night. Compher replaced the injured Nazem Kadri as Colorado's second-line center and scored the most important goal of Game 3 against Edmonton in the Western Conference Finals at Rogers Place. Compher jumped from the box, won a puck fight on the Oilers blue line and flicked a shot past goalie Mike Smith to break a 2-2 tie, 7-18 in the third period. Mikko Rantanen added an empty goal in the last minute for a 4-2 win and a 3-0 lead in a row. "Definitely a rollercoaster ride - not a good time to take a penalty," Compher said of his stumbling minor. Game 4 of the best-of-seven series is Monday night. An Avs win will send them into their first Stanley Cup final since they last won it all in 2002. But they continue without Kadri, the victim of a vicious backstab from Edmonton winger Evander Kane. He will be out for at least the series if not longer," Avs coach Jared Bednar said of Kadri. "The hit - it's the most dangerous game in ice hockey. Compher's big goal was his fifth in his last five games after failing to score in his first nine games of the postseason. And it came a minute after goaltender Pavel Francouz stoned Edmonton superstar center Connor McDavid with a diving glove save on the power play. "I thought Frankie was outstanding," Bednar said of the Francouz. “The one you don't want to see would be the draw (2-2) from distance from the onslaught. But he more than made up for that at certain points throughout the game, at key times to keep us ahead... He fights in there and gave us the win.” The Avalanche lost Kadri to an upper-body injury early in the first period when he was checked into the boards in the defensive end corner by Kane from behind. It came in the first shift after McDavid gave Edmonton a 1-0 lead in his first shift and led to Kane's five-minute boarding major. "I definitely didn't like the shot," said Avs captain Gabe Landeskog. The Avs didn't capitalize on the power play and ended the game 0-of-5 with man advantage. Valeri Nichushkin scored two goals for the Avs, his second giving Colorado a 2-1 lead at 4:37 of the second half. His shot from the right circle fooled Smith as the puck bounced off Edmonton defender Evan Bouchard's leg and changed direction. Edmonton forward Ryan McLeod made it 2-2 with a long wrist shot midway through the third period - the one shot Francouz wanted back. "The guys did a good job on the reset after tying it down," said Landeskog. The game ended 1-1 after the first period where the Avs didn't take the lead for seven minutes but scored an accidental goal from Nichushkin late in the frame. Nichushkin's pass/shot to the net bounced off defenseman Darnell Nurse's stick and behind Smith. After Kadri ran away and went to the dressing room, Edmonton killed Kane's boarding major and then a delay-of-game minor against Nurse. Smith made the difference in the first half, making several excellent saves to keep the Oilers 1-0 up until Nichushkin's lucky jump. Edmonton took the lead in the first shift of the game when McDavid took a short pass from Zach Hyman near the left wall and flicked a low shot past Francouz. Avs star defenseman Cale Makar said a major key is keeping the Oilers' stars from shining. But they have incredible speed and we have to make sure we're putting our faith in the right people and not giving them options." Speaking about Game 4 on Monday night, Landeskog said: "The work isn't over yet. First-line center Nathan MacKinnon, who had five shots and a plus-2 rating, said the Avs' 6-0 postseason road record was the result of trying to play "dull and gross." "We've got five guys that are connected offensively and defensively and you don't have to please anyone," he said. “We're here to hopefully make it boring and gross and just play a good two-way game. There's no show we can put on when we're on the road, and it feels like we're just playing right.” Forward Brad Malone was drafted into the Oilers' roster and played in his first NHL playoff game since 2014 when he was with the Avs. Scratching forwards Kailer Yamamoto and Josh Archibald, Edmonton went with just 11 forwards and an extra defender (Kris Russell).

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A goal at Nazem Kadri should result in a suspension for Evander Kane

Valeri Nichushkin scored twice for the Avs in the second multi-goal playoff game of his career (Author: Gardener)

Nazem KadriOilers winger Evander Kane was effective in Game 1 when he played hockey. He spent parts of Game 2 running around trying to hit Avalanche defender Cale Makar (mostly unsuccessfully). And just 66 seconds into Game 3, just after Connor McDavid gave Edmonton a 1-0 lead, Kane was called out for a five-minute boarding major against the Avs' Nazem Kadri, a reckless and dangerous strike that sent Kadri in the locker room for the exam; he didn't come back. However, the Avalanche was unable to capitalize on this and failed to score on the power play. During the St. Louis series, Avs captain Gabe Landeskog called teammate Valeri Nichushkin a "platoon." In game 3 the train rolled. Only at 16:12 of the first period did the Avalanche score the first equally strong shot on goal. Nichushkin, standing almost on the goal line to the right of goaltender Mike Smith, fired a shot into the net that was deflected by Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse and past Smith. At 4:37 of the second, defenseman Devon Toews' slapshot hit traffic and raced into the slot at Nichushkin, who hit him once through the legs of Oilers defenseman Evan Bouchard and past Smith for a 2-1 lead. It was Nichushkin's second multiple-goal playoff game of his career. A team with as much offensive prowess as the Avalanche shouldn't fall for the power play. At 0-1, the Avs had a five-minute major to equalize. Trailing 2-1 late in the second game, they had two minutes to double their lead. And still 2-1 early in the third, it had two minutes to stomp on the Oilers' soul. But while the batting chart suggested pressure on the Oilers (15 shots in the first four power plays), the Avs need to regroup and find ways to create more quality chances.

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Avs' Kadri leaves Game 3 with a first-half injury

Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri, who had 14 points in his first 12 playoff games this season, walked out of Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals with an injury after Edmonton Oilers forward Evander Kane scored from behind Saturday night. (Author: Gardener)

Game 3Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri left Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals with an injury after Edmonton Oilers forward Evander Kane scored from behind Saturday night. Kane earned a five-minute boarding major after checking Kadri into the endboards from behind, just 1:04 into Game 3, the Oilers' first home game of the series. Kadri tried to control the puck in the Oilers' zone. Kane put his stick over Kadri's jersey numbers and shoved him into the boards. Video review confirmed a five-minute major penalty for boarding. Kadri left the ice after just one shift and never returned for the second third. The Oilers killed the big penalty. The center has 14 points in 12 games and sits in fourth place with the powerful Avalanche. Under NHL rules, Kane could have been assessed a match penalty if intentionally attempting to violate the game, or a game misconduct penalty if the foul resulted in injury "to an opponent's face or head". Officials felt that Kane's actions met neither standard. If the incident escalates to the level of an additional disciplinary action from the NHL Department of Player Safety, Kane's final violation was a $5,000 fine for killing Sean Durzi of the Los Angeles Kings. Kane's 21-game suspension in September for violating NHL/NHLPA-COVID-19 protocol would not account for a suspension for an on-ice incident. Colorado went into play with a 2-0 lead 3 and was up 10-2 this postseason.

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Avalanche's Nazem Kadri leaves Game 3 with an injury

Colorado Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri was forced out of Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals after getting a hit in the tie from Edmonton's Evander Kane. (Author: Gardener)

Game 3June 2, 2022; Denver, Colorado, United States; Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri (91) scored after scoring the second half against the Edmonton Oilers in game two of the Western Conference Finals of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Ball Arena. Colorado Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri was forced out of Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals against the Edmonton Oilers just a minute into the action after receiving a hit in the tie from Edmonton's Evander Kane. Kane was rated a five-minute major for getting into the game but was not knocked out of the game. Kadri stayed on the ice next to the end boards for a few minutes before being helped off the ice. Not only does Colorado have to lose one of their most important players, they have to go almost the entire game without a forward unless Kadri returns. Although teams regularly play with 11 forwards in the lineup, they do so with seven defenders dressed. Likewise, Edmonton came into the game with 11 forwards and seven defensemen, so the decision not to knock Kane out is a relief for the Oilers. Kadri has 87 points in just 71 games in the regular season. He didn't miss a beat in the playoffs and accumulated 14 points in 12 games. Subscribe to Yardbarker's Morning Bark, the most comprehensive sports newsletter. Customize your email to get the latest news on your favorite sports, teams and schools. (Provided by Yardbarker)

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