Colorado Avalanche sweep Edmonton Oilers to reach Stanley Cup final

EDMONTON, Alta. — Artturi Lehkonen scored 1 minute 19 seconds into overtime, and the Colorado Avalanche rallied to beat the Edmonton Oil...


EDMONTON, Alta. — Artturi Lehkonen scored 1 minute 19 seconds into overtime, and the Colorado Avalanche rallied to beat the Edmonton Oilers, 6-5, on Monday night to complete a four-game sweep in the final of the Western Conference and heading to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 2001.

Colorado will face either the Rangers or the Tampa Bay Lightning, who have won the last two Stanley Cups. The Rangers lead the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Finals series two games to one. Game 4 takes place Tuesday night in Tampa, Florida.

Cale Makar, Devon Toews, Gabriel Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen also scored for Colorado. Pavel Francouz stopped 30 of 35 shots.

“Our main focus is just trying to be resilient, making sure that every night we bring the same game,” said Makar, who also had four assists. “Sometimes it might not be pretty, but at the end of the day we’ll just try to get the job done.”

Zach Hyman scored twice for the Oilers. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Connor McDavid and Zack Kassian also scored for Edmonton. Leon Draisaitl had four assists and goaltender Mike Smith finished with 36 saves on 42 shots.

The teams combined for six goals in the third period. Colorado, which started the period trailing 3-1 and then faced a 4-2 deficit, scored four times in the third despite being outscored 15-13.

“It was a big comeback win for sure,” Lehkonen said. “We were talking in the second intermission that we just have to find our game and we can get through it.”

Rantanen appeared to complete Colorado’s comeback, scoring a power-play goal with just over five minutes to go to give the Avalanche a 5-4 advantage.

But the Oilers fought back and forced overtime when Kassian scored at 16:38 and tied at 5-5. Lehkonen scored early in the extra period. He deflected a shot from the point then put the rebound past Smith. The goal stood after a review for a high stick.

“Cale shot,” said Lehkkonen, who scored the goal to send a team to the final for a second straight year after doing so in 2021 with Montreal. “I have a tip on this. It landed directly on my blade. I basically had an empty net in front of me, so plug it in.

The Avalanche played without injured forward Nazem Kadri, who was injured on an illegal hit by Edmonton’s Evander Kane in Game 3. sadness. The NHL suspended Kane for Game 4. The Avalanche did not disclose Kadri’s injury or announce the length of his absence.

Since making their NHL debut with the Quebec Nordiques in 1979, the Avalanche franchise has won two Stanley Cups: a Florida sweep in 1996 and their 2001 win over the Devils.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Colorado Avalanche sweep Edmonton Oilers to reach Stanley Cup final
Colorado Avalanche sweep Edmonton Oilers to reach Stanley Cup final
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