AP Photo/David Zalubowski
Nathan MacKinnon had himself an incredible Wednesday night. His teammates, well…not so much.
The Colorado Avalanche blew two separate leads, wasted MacKinnon’s hat trick and threw away a chance to end their second-round series against the St. Louis Blues, losing Game 5 in overtime, 5-4.
Tyler Bozak was the man of the hour for the Blues, scoring the game-winning goal in the extra period.
Hockey fans, meanwhile, let the Avalanche hear it after they let this one slip away:
z – SplitTheCheck @ahh_nuts
We just need ONE key save. That’s all it was. My goodness…. #STLvsCOL
The Avalanche had every opportunity to win both this game and series. They held a 3-0 lead early in the second period, with MacKinnon—who hadn’t scored a goal in the first four games of the series—finding the back of the net twice in the first period alone.
But goals from Vladimir Tarasenko, Robert Thomas and Justin Faulk erased that lead.
No matter—MacKinnon responded by scoring one of the goals of the playoffs in the third period after St. Louis to once again give Colorado the lead.
Quentin Sickafoose @QSickafoose
That was one of the filthiest goals I’ve ever seen 🤯#GoAvsGo
But yet again, the Blues had an answer, as Thomas scored his second goal of the night with just 56 seconds remaining to push the game into overtime.
From there, Bozac silenced a stunned Colorado crowd and guaranteed at least one more game in this series.
“You sulk for three minutes, and you move on,” Gabriel Landeskog told reporters about how the Avalanche would respond to the soul-crushing loss. “It’s playoff hockey. It’s not supposed to be easy.”
No, it isn’t, but plenty of Avalanche players will be licking their wounds after that loss, including goalie Darcy Kuemper, who gave up five goals on 30 shots. The Avs will need him, and the rest of the roster not named MacKinnon, to brush themselves off before the series returns to St. Louis for Friday’s Game 6 at 8 p.m. ET on TNT.