Rantanen scores 30th, Avalanche defeat Kings without injured MacKinnon

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LOS ANGELES Mikko Rantanen scored his 30th goal in the Colorado Avalanche’s 3-2 win against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on Friday.

Cale Makar had a goal and an assist, Alex Newhook had an assist for his first NHL point for the Avalanche (35-13-4). Philipp Grubauer made 15 saves.

Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon did not play because of a lower-body injury.

The Kings (21-25-6) were eliminated from Stanley Cup Playoff contention with the loss. Calvin Petersen made 34 saves. 

The teams play here again Wednesday.

Tyson Jost gave the Avalanche a 2-1 lead at 2:56 of the second. He put the puck on net from the left circle and it went in off Petersen’s pads. 

Makar made it 3-1 at 10:02 when Petersen was screened and late to react to his wrist shot. 

Newhook, the No. 16 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, had the secondary assist for his first point in two NHL games. 

Gabriel Vilardi cut it to 3-2 at 17:26 of the third. 

Rantanen reached 30 goals for the second time in his NHL career when he scored a one-timer set up by Makar to tie it 1-1 at 5:49 of the first period. He had 31 in 2018-19.  

Rantanen is the third Avalanche player to score 30 goals in fewer than 50 games. He did it in 48 games, joining Joe Sakic (44 games in 1995-96) and MacKinnon (49 games in 2019-20).   

Makar got his 40th point with the primary assist, becoming the first Colorado defenseman with at least 40 in each of his first two seasons.  

Brendan Lemieux put the Kings ahead 1-0 2:12 into the first period. Carl Grundstrom‘s shot from distance was stopped by Grubauer, but Lemieux put in the rebound from the slot.  

Avalanche defenseman Patrik Nemeth did not return after sustaining an injury in the second period when he went headfirst into the boards after getting tangled up with Kings center Jaret Anderson-Dolan. Nemeth was able to skate to the bench under his own power and went straight to the locker room.  

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