NHL

4
Final 1 2 3 Tot
Colorado 1 2 1 4
Boston 1 0 0 1
1
4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET22:00 BRT, December 7, 2019
TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts  Attendance: 17,850

Bruins host streaking Avalanche in clash of top teams

Colorado Avalanche at Boston Bruins

  1. The Avalanche have earned points in six straight games versus the Bruins (5-0-1), scoring at least four goals in all five victories. From 2010-11 through November 2016, Boston held Colorado to three goals or fewer in nine straight meetings.
  2. The Avalanche have won five straight games, matching the streak they enjoyed to open the season. Colorado has outscored its opponents by a 22-9 margin during the current streak, including 17-6 at even strength.
  3. With a win over the Av's, the Bruins would have 48 points, tied for the third-highest total through 30 games by any team since 1999-00. Only one Bruin team has ever recorded as many as 48 points through 30 games: the 1929-30 team started 25-4-1 for 51 points.
  4. Nathan MacKinnon's 44 points are the most he has recorded in the first 28 games of a season in his career. In the franchise's tenure in Colorado, only two players have recorded more points in the team's first 28 games of a season -- Peter Forsberg (48 in 1995-96) and Mikko Rantanen (46 last season).
  5. David Pastrnak leads the NHL with 25 goals, including 16 in 17 home games. No Bruin has led the NHL in goals in a season since Phil Esposito had 61 in 1974-75, his last full season with the club. Thursday's OT loss to Boston was just the third time in 17 home games that Pastrnak failed to record a point.
  6. At 10-5-1, Colorado is tied for the second-most road wins in the NHL; the Av's have won three straight and five of their last six away from home. Boston is 12-0-5 at home, tied for the most home-ice victories in the league (Islanders -- 12-2-1).

Note to the Colorado Avalanche as they take on the Bruins in their lone trip to Boston this season: It isn't over until it's over.

Third-period comebacks have been a hallmark for the Bruins as they take a 13-game points streak (9-0-4) into Saturday's tilt. Boston has scored 12 of its last 13 goals in the third period or later, including three to rally from a 3-0 deficit in an eventual overtime loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday.

That defeat snapped an eight-game winning streak for the Bruins. Meanwhile, the Avalanche have won five straight and possess an offense as dangerous through all three periods as any team in the league.

Colorado has outscored opponents 22-9 during its streak, which continued with a 3-2 road win over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday. Captain Gabriel Landeskog scored in his return after missing 16 games -- including all of November -- with a lower-body injury. Winger Andre Burakovsky was also back in the lineup after a three-game absence (upper body) and backup goalie Pavel Francouz held firm in net with 38 saves.

"We put ourselves in a position to win," Avalanche coach Jared Bednar told reporters. "We got some saves when we needed them. It was a good all-around effort by our team, especially on the road."

Without Landeskog, Colorado went 9-6-1 to keep pace with the Western Conference-leading St. Louis Blues in the Central Division.

"I wasn't even nervous about getting back in the lineup, the boys were so hot," said Landeskog. "But no, it is nice to get back in and get a win right away. It has been a good road trip so far, excited to get to Boston and get a day off tomorrow and rest up and then back to work on Saturday."

The Avalanche figure to have their work cut out for them as the Bruins are still the only team in the league undefeated at home (12-0-5). Their league-leading 42 third-period goals have a lot to do with that, as was the case Thursday.

"I don't know that it's sustainable. Maybe if you can keep it tied and then in the third find that crack and try to expose it. We've got game-breakers that can do that," Bruins forward David Backes said. "... That being said, we showed some great character and found a way to get one point out of it."

Boston hopes to get one if its biggest game-breakers back soon as top-line center Patrice Bergeron joined the team for practice Friday in a non-contact jersey. Bergeron (lower body) has already been ruled out for Saturday, which will be his seventh consecutive game missed.

"Once you have the red sweater on, you're that much closer," Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said. "Monday (in Ottawa) now becomes more of a target day for us if there's no setbacks."

Winger Brett Ritchie was a full participant in practice Friday and nears his return from six games missed with an elbow infection.

The Bruins and Avalanche already played in Colorado earlier this season, Boston losing 4-2.

--Field Level Media

Updated December 6, 2019