World

Colorado Avalanche Sweep Edmonton Oilers to Reach Stanley Cup Finals

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

Colorado will take on either the Rangers or the Tampa Bay Lightning, who have won the past two Stanley Cups. The Rangers lead the best-of-seven Eastern Conference finals series two games to one. Game 4 is Tuesday night in Tampa, Fla.

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

“Our main thing is just trying to be resilient, making sure that every single night we bring that same game,” said Makar, who also had four assists. “Sometimes it might not be pretty, but at the end of the day we’re just going to 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 goalie 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 by 3-1 and later faced a 4-2 deficit, scored four times in the third despite being outshot 15-13.

“It was a great comeback win, for sure,” Lehkonen said. “We were talking in the second intermission that we just got to find our game and we can pull through this.”

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

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

“Cale took the shot,” said Lehkkonen, who scored the goal to send a team to the final for a second consecutive year after doing so in 2021 with Montreal. “I got a tip on it. It landed straight on my blade. I basically had an empty-netter in front of me, so tap it in.”

The Avalanche played without the injured forward Nazem Kadri, who was hurt on an illegal hit by Edmonton’s Evander Kane in Game 3. Kadri didn’t return after Kane sent his left arm crashing into the boards on a hit that was reviewed and called a major penalty. The N.H.L. suspended Kane for Game 4. The Avalanche have not revealed what Kadri’s injury is or announced how long he will be out.

Since its start in the N.H.L. as the Quebec Nordiques in 1979, the Avalanche franchise has won two Stanley Cups: a 1996 sweep of Florida and their 2001 victory against the Devils.

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