Avalanche blank Sharks, Bruins top Blue Jackets

DENVER (AP) — Nathan MacKinnon kept up his scoring spree with a second-period goal, Philipp Grubauer stopped 32 shots for his first career playoff shutout and the Colorado Avalanche beat the San Jose Sharks 3-0 Thursday night to tie the Western Conference semifinal series at two games apiece.

MacKinnon has at least a point in eight straight games. It’s the longest streak by an Avalanche player in the postseason since Peter Forsberg had a point in eight straight in 2002.

Colin Wilson gave Colorado a two-goal cushion with a power-play goal early in the third period. Wilson’s score was set up by a no-look, between-the-legs pass from Mikko Rantanen, who registered two assists. Erik Johnson added an empty-netter with 1:09 remaining.

Game 5 is Saturday in San Jose.

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BRUINS 4, BLUE JACKETS 1

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Tuukka Rask stopped 39 shots and the Boston Bruins got some much-needed production from their top-liners in a win over the Blue Jackets that evened their Eastern Conference semifinal series at two games apiece.

Patrice Bergeron had two goals, David Pastrnak had a goal and an assist and Sean Kuraly also tallied for the Bruins, who had lost the last two games in the best of-seven series but knotted the set again as it moves back to Boston for Game 5 on Saturday.

Artemi Panarin scored for Columbus on a controversial play, and Sergei Bobrovsky, who has been spectacular in the postseason so far, had 41 saves but was beaten on long shots by Pastrnak and Bergeron in the first period.

Brad Marchand picked up an assist on Bergeron’s goal but also committed three penalties, one leading to an unsuccessful Blue Jackets penalty shot in the first period. Marchand and Bergeron had been kept off the score sheet in the first three games.

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