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MacKinnon scores tying goal, lifts Avs in SO

NEW YORK (AP) — Nathan MacKinnon scored the tying goal in the third period and then connected in the shootout as the Colorado Avalanche rallied for a 4-3 victory over the New York Rangers on Thursday night.

MacKinnon started the tiebreaker with a goal, and Alex Tanguay added one in the third round. Semyon Varlamov stopped Mats Zuccarello and then Lee Stempniak on the final attempt as Colorado won for the first time in three games on a four-game trip.

MacKinnon got the Avalanche even at 3 when his shot during a power play deflected off defenseman Dan Girardi’s stick and past Henrik Lundqvist at 7:54 for his fifth goal.

Matt Duchene had a goal and assist, and Tanguay also scored for the Avalanche, who had dropped four of five. Varlamov stopped 30 shots.

Derek Stepan and Girardi scored their first goals of the season 1:43 apart in the second period for the Rangers, who led 3-2 after trailing by a goal twice. Kevin Hayes also scored in the middle frame, and Henrik Lundqvist made 26 saves.

Colorado recorded the first six shots of the second period, but couldn’t build on its 1-0 lead. The Rangers put their first puck on Varlamov 3:50 in, and then put three past him before the period was finished.

During a lengthy delayed penalty, the Rangers got even when Hayes scored his second of the season at 6:42. Dominic Moore fired a bad-angle shot that Varlamov blocked with his right pad, but the rebound came to Hayes, who backhanded it in.

Tanguay, in his first game up on the top line, put the Avalanche back in front at 11:09 when he took a pass in front from the right-wing boards from defenseman Erik Johnson and knocked it past Lundqvist for his seventh of the season and third in four games.

Colorado received the first true power play when Rangers defenseman Dan Boyle — playing his first game since breaking his right hand on opening night — was called for boarding Johnson with 5:20 left in the second.

That advantage, however, lasted only 14 seconds as Tanguay was sent off for hooking.

New York tied it during 4-on-4 play when Stepan fired in a shot off a rush with 4:41 left in the second, and Girardi gave the Rangers their first lead when Zuccarello found the big defenseman in front with a feed from the right circle with 2:58 remaining.

Stepan was playing in his fourth game of the season since returning from a broken leg.

The first-period performance by both teams was the polar opposite from two nights earlier when the Rangers dominated the Pittsburgh Penguins, and the Avalanche were routed 6-0 by the New York Islanders.

Colorado controlled play early in this one, outshooting the Rangers 12-6 and taking a 1-0 lead on Duchene’s fifth with 4:51 left.

The Rangers were sluggish throughout the period, unlike Tuesday night when they scored three times in the first en route to a 5-0 win.

NOTES: Stepan has a goal and three assists in four games. … Rangers LW Carl Hagelin played in his 200th NHL game. … Cody McLeod, who last month became the first Avalanche player with 1,000 career penalty minutes, fought Tanner Glass in the first period. … Colorado C Daniel Briere played for the first time in eight games.

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