Buzzing on Yahoo Sports:

Avalanche 2, Devils 1 (SO)

The SportsXchange

DENVER -- Goaltender Semyon Varlamov stopped 33 shots, center Ryan O'Reilly scored in regulation and in the shootout and the Colorado Avalanche beat the New Jersey Devils 2-1 on Thursday night.

Center Matt Duchene, celebrating his 23rd birthday, also had a goal in the shootout for the Avalanche, who won three straight.

Goalie Cory Schneider made 37 saves and center Andre Lotkionov scored for the Devils.

The Avalanche beat Chicago on Tuesday playing with a skeleton crew. They dressed just 17 players and then lost defenseman Erik Johnson to a back injury in the second period.

They were able to pull out a 3-2 overtime win against the Blackhawks, and they got Johnson back for Thursday's game.

Johnson returned for Thursday's game when coach Patrick Roy decided to dress 11 forwards and seven defensemen against New Jersey, opting to double shift a center on the fourth line. In the first period it was O'Reilly who was skating with that crew, and it paid off nearly midway through.

Left winger Patrick Bordeleau got the puck from right winger Brad Malone and fed O'Reilly in front of the Devils' net. O'Reilly buried the puck over Schneider to make it 1-0. It was his 18th of the season.

The Devils came into Thursday having won three of their last four. New Jersey, which reached the Stanley Cup finals in 2012, is trying to climb in the Eastern Conference standings. The Devils sit in 11th place, three points behind the eighth-place New York Rangers.

New Jersey couldn't take advantage of a power play midway through the second period. It ended early when defenseman Eric Gelinas tripped O'Reilly has he tried to enter the Devils zone.

New Jersey managed just two shots on goal in the second.

They finally broke through when Latkionov beat Varlamov with a slap shot from the right circle with 11:01 left in regulation.

Varlamov made saves on left winger Patrik Elias and center Adam Henrique in the shootout.

NOTES: Avalanche C Paul Stastny (leg) and D Cory Sarich (back) both missed a second consecutive game. Stastny is close to returning and could be back when Colorado plays the Predators in Nashville on Saturday. ... New Jersey activated LW Patrik Elias and C Jacob Josefson from injured reserve and assigned F Mike Sislo to AHL Albany. Josefson was a healthy scratch Thursday. ... The Avalanche recalled D Karl Stollery from AHL Lake Erie and assigned G Sami Aittokallio to the same club. Aittokallio was recalled to serve as G Semyon Varlamov's backup while Jean-Sebastien Giguere recovered from back spasms. ... The Devils' penalty kill began the night ranked third in the NHL.
Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Football
View Comments (0)