MONTREAL (AP) — Cale Makar scored to put Colorado ahead to stay late in the second period, Valeri Nichushkin had a goal and an assist, and the Avalanche beat the Montreal Canadiens 4-1 on Thursday night.
Andre Burakovsky and Gabriel Landeskog also scored for the Avalanche, who bounced back from an ugly 8-3 loss at Toronto a night earlier.
“I think our team is really understanding of what we have to do on both sides of the puck in hockey games,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. “And I think last night was a real example. In Toronto, we came out and they were more determined, they checked harder than we checked.”
Goalie Jonas Johansson made 19 saves for Colorado, playing on back-to-back nights because starter Darcy Kuemper is out with an upper-body injury.
“I was really proud of him,” Bednar said. “As a young goalie, generally we wouldn’t play our guy back-to-back but in this case he hasn’t played a lot of hockey and I wanted to see what he was made of tonight because last night was a tough night for him and for the team.
“He’s been working hard with us for months now and he’s only played a handful of games and this is an opportunity now for him to string some games together.”
Ben Charot scored for Montreal, and Jake Allen stopped 30 of 33 shots.
Colorado opened the scoring with a short-handed goal in the second period. Loan O’Connor passed to a wide-open Nichushkin in front of the net.
Chiarot leveled the score for Montreal with his fifth goal of the season. His slap shot from the point deflected off an Avalanche player and ringed off the post before beating Johansson.
The Avs regained the lead late in the second when Makar deflected Samuel Girard’s shot from the blue line for his 10th goal of the season.
Burakovsky gave Colorado a 3-1 advantage in the third period by tapping in a loose puck in front of the net.
Landeskog added an empty-netter with 2:49 left.
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