Rookie forward Nathan MacKinnon didn’t wilt under the pressure of making his postseason debut. The 18-year-old forward had three assists to help Colorado earn a 5-4 overtime win over Minnesota on Thursday.
His efforts didn’t go unnoticed by Wild coach Mike Yeo, who wants to see his team make an adjustment when playing against MacKinnon in Game 2 on Saturday.
“We didn’t make things hard enough on (MacKinnon) physically last night,” Yeo said, per the team’s Twitter account.
Minnesota had a 4-2 lead going into the third period, but the silver lining for them is that splitting the first two games would put them in a great position, given that the series opened in Colorado.
The Avalanche went from the Western Conference basement to the Central Division title in the span of just one season and vastly exceeded almost everyone’s preseason expectations in the process. This campaign will be seen as a success for them no matter what happens next, but they would certainly like to cement their rise by going on a lengthy playoff run.