Colorado Avalanche Advance To First Stanley Cup Final In 20 Years

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The Colorado Avalanche are moving on, and one-half of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final is set. For the first time in 20 years, the Avalanche will be one of the final two teams remaining and will face off against either the Tampa Bay Lightning or New York Rangers. They completed the sweep of the Edmonton Oilers in dramatic come-from-behind fashion on the road, winning 6-5 in overtime.

Colorado Avalanche Win Game 4, Advance To Stanley Cup Final

Snowy Start in Edmonton

Colorado started the game and left the first period in control. Like much of the series, they used their speed and skill to draw penalties, and it paid off early. Cale Makar continued his torrid offensive pace to net the first goal of the game less than four minutes in on the power play, giving the Avs a 1-0 lead.

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In the second period, though, the Oilers had their most dominant performance of the series when it mattered most for them. Three unanswered goals from Zach Hyman, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and Connor McDavid put the Oilers in the drivers’ seat with some long-awaited sustained pressure (and their first lead of the series).

Turning the Tide

However, it was Devon Toews just 31 seconds into the third period who cut the Edmonton lead to one. It was a signal of things to come in the third period for Colorado, who finally seemed to wear down Mike Smith after what had been an overall solid playoff run for the veteran netminder. Hyman restored the Oilers’ two-goal lead shortly after the Toews marker, but it was all Colorado after that point. The big boys showed up, with Gabriel Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon, and Mikko Rantanen scoring three unanswered themselves to give Colorado a 5-4 lead.

The game wasn’t over yet, though. After Colorado grabbed momentum, Edmonton’s Zack Kassian capped off a rush with 3:22 remaining in regulation to tie the game up at five. It set up the first overtime game of the series. It was Colorado’s first overtime since their Game 5 loss to St. Louis, and Edmonton’s first since Connor McDavid‘s goal sent them to the Western Conference Final.

The Winner

Just 1:19 into overtime, though, it was a gigantic Trade Deadline acquisition Artturi Lehkonen who netted the winner in overtime after a high-sticking review. Colorado will head to the Cup Final.

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