MacKinnon’s OT goal caps Avs’ rally over Red Wings

Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon (29) sprays Detroit Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard (35) with ice while having his shot blocked in the second period of an NHL hockey game Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

DETROIT | Jared Bednar thought his Colorado Avalanche got what they deserved Sunday night.

Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill didn’t disagree.

Nathan MacKinnon scored 2:55 into overtime and Colorado overcame a late two-goal deficit to beat Detroit 4-3.

Niklas Kronwall put Detroit ahead 3-1 with 8:53 left in the third period, but Nail Yakupov made it 3-2 on a power play with 6:15 remaining before Carl Soderberg tied it with Colorado’s goalie pulled in the final minute.

MacKinnon snapped a low shot to the short side past goalie Jimmy Howard for the winner.

Colorado had to rally, but it was the better team most of the night. It held a 24-14 edge in shots through two periods and finished with a 37-24 advantage, a measure that Avalanche coach Bednar felt was a true barometer of the game.

“I’ve liked the way our team’s kind of kept battling,” Bednar said. “Even in Nashville yesterday (a 5-2 loss), we were out of that game but we kept playing, not giving up.

“You’ve got to play the whole game and give yourself the best chance, and at least develop habits in games like that when you’re out. We kept playing yesterday and got two third-period goals. We kept playing today and got two more.”

Justin Abdelkader and Andreas Athanasiou also scored for the Wings. Erik Johnson had Colorado’s other goal. Howard had 33 saves.

The Wings took a 2-1 lead in the final minute of the second period when Athanasiou split the Colorado defense and beat goalie Jonathan Bernier with a forehand deke move.

They increased the advantage to 3-1 when Kronwall scored his first of the season on a power play.

About three minutes later, Yakupov got one back on a power play after defenseman Johnson made a strong play at the blue line to keep a Detroit clearing attempt in the zone.

“I was really happy when he stopped it so we had a chance to create our moment and make sure we had our shot,” Yakupov said. “It was kind of a good play around the net and I got a lucky bounce, so all I had to do was shoot it and that’s what I did.”

With Bernier on the bench in favor of an extra attacker, Soderberg redirected MacKinnon’s shot past Jimmy Howard at 19:14.

“The goal is going to get scored from some place around the net on a deflection or a tip, so you’ve got to have traffic,” Bednar said. “And that’s what Carl did.”

As unhappy as he was that his team let the game get away, Blashill wasn’t shocked by the outcome.

“We didn’t play good enough from the start, so we got in my opinion one more point than we deserved,” Blashill said. “I thought they outskated us the whole game.

“We were in position to steal the game. Eventually over the course of 60 minutes, it caught up to us and they were able to tie it.”

NOTES: Bernier stopped 21 shots. … Detroit D Danny DeKeyser appeared in his first game since suffering a sprain and hairline fracture to his ankle on Oct. 10 in Dallas. … The Avalanche completed their fifth set of back-to-back games this season. They are 1-4 in the second game.


Avalanche: Return home to face Dallas on Wednesday night.

Red Wings: Continue their five-game homestand against Edmonton on Wednesday night.