DENVER | Nathan MacKinnon kept up his torrid scoring with two goals and an assist, Semyon Varlamov was sharp in making 37 saves and the Colorado Avalanche extended Detroit’s skid to 10 straight games by beating the Red Wings 5-1 on Sunday.
Gabriel Landeskog, Blake Comeau and Tyson Barrie also scored to help the Avalanche remain in playoff position with 10 games remaining. The Avs have 86 points after accumulating a league-low 48 last season.
Justin Abdelkader had a goal for the Red Wings, who fell to 0-9-1 during a winless streak in which they’ve been outscored by a 41-19 margin. It’s the team’s longest winless streak since a 12-game run in 1989.
Varlamov showed no signs of fatigue despite playing in his 17th straight game (15 starts). He’s been pressed into more duty of late with backup Jonathan Bernier sidelined by a concussion.
MacKinnon remains among the league’s top scoring leaders with 89 points. His goal in the second period gave Colorado a 3-0 lead and came on a backhand with Niklas Kronwall trying to cover him.
The 22-year-old MacKinnon sealed the win with his 38th goal of the season in the third period — on a wraparound that hit off a Detroit defenseman and deflected in. That’s just the way things have been going for MacKinnon these days.
The last time a Colorado player scored more than 36 goals in a season was 2002-03, when Milan Hejduk had 50.
Barrie’s goal late in the third came with a two-man advantage and extended his points streak to 10 straight games. Abdelkader, who was in the penalty box, was given a misconduct after the goal and sent to the locker room. He slammed his stick on the way out.
Colorado remains tough at home, improving to 15-2-1 over its last 18 games at the Pepsi Center.
The Avs scored on a pair of tip-ins during a dominant first period — one by Landeskog and another by Comeau.
An injury-riddled Colorado team received a big boost with defenseman Erik Johnson and forward Vladislav Kamenev returning to the ice Sunday. It didn’t take Johnson long to make his presence felt, dishing out a big hit in the opening seconds. He’s been sidelined by an upper-body injury since he was hurt against Edmonton on Feb. 18.
Kamenev has been out since November with a broken arm. He was acquired as part of the three-team trade that sent Matt Duchene to Ottawa.
NOTES: Detroit D Jonathan Ericsson played in his 600th career NHL game. … Red Wings goaltender Jared Coreau made 26 stops. … Landeskog and Rantanen each had two assists. … D Patrik Nemeth took a high-stick to the face in the third period and appeared to lose a tooth.
Red Wings: Host Philadelphia on Tuesday night after concluding a five-game trip.
Avalanche: At Chicago on Tuesday night before returning home for two games.
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