NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Pavel Francouz made 30 saves in a career-best sixth straight win, Erik Johnson had a goal and an assist, and the Colorado Avalanche beat the Nashville Predators 3-2 on Saturday night.
Gabriel Landeskog and Martin Kaut also scored for the Avalanche, who matched a season high with their sixth-straight win.
“It’s good for all of us, we’re playing really well lately,” Francouz said. “We keep getting points, which is huge in the standings. We keep chasing St. Louis and I really hope we’ll be playing like this in the next game again.”
Colorado also won a franchise-best ninth consecutive road game and recorded its 11th win in February, also a franchise best.
“It was good that we dug in and got the two points,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. “It was a little bit of a strange game at times, but our penalty kill held us in there, (Francouz) held us in and we got a couple of timely goals.”
Viktor Arvidsson and Calle Jarnkrok scored for Nashville, which had its three-game winning streak snapped. Juuse Saros finished with 27 saves. Ryan Ellis and Roman Josi each assisted on both Nashville goals.
“We just didn’t find enough ways to get the puck in the back of the net,” Nashville coach John Hynes said. “I think it was a hard-fought game.”
Landeskog scored the game’s first goal at 13:23 of the second period.
From the left corner, Johnson feathered a pass to Landeskog, who drove toward the Predators net, and from the goal line, he lifted a quick wrist shot into the top far corner, just underneath the crossbar. Landeskog has goals in two of his last three games, and a point in four straight.
“(Johnson) made a nice play to suck that guy in and slide it to me and I was able to get a step and get in between two guys,” Landeskog said. “Saros is a really good goalie, but you get around the net and a smaller guy has to put his shoulders down and sometimes there’s room up top. I got a little lucky there. I don’t think it was in by much.”
Kaut doubled the Colorado lead 2:15 later.
Tyson Jost drove down the right side and pulled up at the top of the right circle. There, he found a trailing Kaut with a pass in the slot. Kaut beat Saros with a wrist shot on to glove side.
Arvidsson converted on a breakaway at 14:40 of the third to spoil Francouz’s shutout bid.
Nashville appeared to tie the game at 2 at 16:46 of the third, but Colin Blackwell was called for interfering with Francouz.
“I felt when I scored, I think we were coming there,” Arvidsson said. “It’s a questionable call I think. It’s too bad it didn’t go our way.”
Johnson added an empty-net goal in the final minute and Jarnkrok scored with two seconds left to account for the final margin.
NOTES: Jost extended his points streak to three games. ... Former Avalanche and Predators forward Peter Forsberg attended the game. ... Colorado has not allowed a power-play goal in its last eight games. ... Saros had won five of his previous six starts… Ellis has a goal and seven assists in his four-game points streak.
Avalanche: Visit Detroit Red Wings on Monday.
Predators: Host Edmonton Oilers on Monday.
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