Avalanche 4, Jets 3 (SO)

Jason Bell, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Colorado center Matt Duchene snapped a seven-game drought with a pair of goals in regulation time and then scored in the shootout to propel the Avalanche to a 4-3 victory over the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday night.
Duchene, who hadn't scored a goal since returning to the Avalanche lineup Nov. 29 after missing three games with an abdominal injury, scored his 13th and 14th goals of the season.
He also beat Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec in the shootout before winger P.A. Parenteau sealed it with another goal in the shootout.
Colorado upped its record to 21-9-0, while the Jets remain at .500 with a 14-14-5 record.
Right winger Blake Wheeler scored a pair of goals for Winnipeg.
Right winger Michael Frolik also scored for the Jets, while center Ryan O'Reilly added a goal and an assist for Colorado.
The Jets jumped out to a 2-0 lead just five minutes into the game as Wheeler and Frolik both scored their eighth goals of the year.
On the game's very first shift, Wheeler spun and fired a low shot that Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov blocked, but the rebound hit blue-liner Eric Johnson's skate and ricocheted in at just the 24-second mark.
Out-hustled early by the home side, Colorado took a couple of minor penalties to give the Jets a two-man advantage. Despite killing off the rest of the first infraction, the Avalanche surrendered Frolik's power-play goal at 5:25 -- a deflection off a canon from the point by rookie defenseman Jacob Trouba.
Colorado cut the lead in half before the first period was over when Duchene scored a gorgeous goal, taking a pass in full flight, walking around defenseman Dustin Byfuglien and then beating Pavelec cleanly.
Duchene picked up his second point of the game on O'Reilly's 10th of the year at 14:47 of the middle frame to knot the game at 2.
Duchene scored Colorado's third straight goal, streaking to the net and cleaning up the garbage after center Nathan McKinnon blew past Wheeler and flipped the puck to the front with just two seconds left in the middle frame.
Wheeler made up for his mistake midway through the third, swiping a rebound past Varlamov with the Avalanche a man short for his ninth goal of the season. Jets defenseman Grant Clitsome recorded his second assist of the game on the tying goal.
The Jets are now winless in five straight games at the MTS Centre. Their last home-ice victory came Nov. 15, when they pinned a 3-2 shootout loss on the Philadelphia Flyers.
Winnipeg, 7-7-4 on home ice, closes out its homestand Saturday with a matinee matchup against the Dallas Stars. Colorado heads home to host the Minnesota Wild on Saturday night.
Varlamov stopped 35 shots, while Pavelec made 23 saves for the Jets.
NOTES: Three weeks have passed since the Avalanche last scored on the power play. The drought matches the team's longest since moving to Colorado in 1995. The club has gone 0-for-24 during a stretch that began following a 4-3 triumph in Phoenix on Nov. 21. ... Chants of "Patrick, Patrick" rained down as fans gave it to Avalanche head coach and Hall of Fame goalie Patrick Roy after he took a bench minor penalty, presumably for directing some choice words at the officials after the Jets took a 2-0 lead. ... The Jets began the night tied for the NHL lead in one-goal games this season. Winnipeg played in 19 games decided by a single marker and held a record of 7-8-4 in those contests. The Calgary Flames, New York Islanders and New Jersey Devils also had 19 one-goal games. ... Jets' top goal scorer, C Bryan Little, lost his touch for eight games but snapped the streak Tuesday with his 13th of the season, a power-play tally against the St. Louis Blues. ... Avalanche LW Alex Tanguay missed his 17th consecutive game due to injury. The 34-year-old veteran suffered a setback in his recovery from a knee injury last week and hurt his hip. He is out indefinitely and might need surgery.

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