Stars smother Avalanche to win opener


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Los Angeles (AFP)

Alexander Radulov scored two goals as the Dallas Stars continued to follow the momentum of a historic comeback, beating the Colorado Avalanche 5-3 in the opening game of their NHL playoff series on Saturday.

The Stars were coming off an electrifying rally in the last game of their previous series, spotting the Calgary Flames three goals and then scoring seven in a row to win 7-3 and advance to the semi-finals of the Conference. West against Colorado.

On Saturday, the Stars quickly took the lead and held on as Tyler Sequin, Blake Comeau and Roope Hintz scored singles and goaltender Anton Khudobin made 28 saves.

Coming out of deficits is nothing new this season for the Stars, who have won eight regular season games in which they followed at least two goals. They also fell behind the Flames in the series 2-1.

Their three-goal comeback against Calgary on Thursday was also the biggest for the franchise since the 1985 playoffs.

Radulov added an assist, while captain Jamie Benn had three assists for Dallas, who finished 2-0-2 against Colorado in the regular season.

Nathan MacKinnon had two goals and an assist, and Gabriel Landeskog had a goal and an assist in what could have been a costly loss for Colorado.

Starting goalie Philipp Grubauer left the game with an injury at 3:06 in the second period.

After rushing to the right, Grubauer of Germany collapsed on the ice and remained face down for several minutes while the team’s coach dealt with him. He favored his left leg while being helped off the ice.

Substitute Pavel Francouz stopped 18 of 20 shots.

Both teams are in the conference semi-finals for the second consecutive season. Each was eliminated in seven games last year – Colorado by the San Jose Sharks and Dallas by the Stanley Cup-winning St. Louis Blues, who were eliminated from that playoff series Friday by the Vancouver Canucks. .


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