Avalanche win after Jets’ own-goal in overtime

Rene Bourque was simply fighting for the puck along the boards in overtime. Moments later, he was credited with the winning goal without having taken the shot.

DENVER (AP) — Rene Bourque was simply fighting for the puck along the boards in overtime. Moments later, he was credited with the winning goal without having taken the shot.

Bourque had two goals, including the game-winner when Nikolaj Ehlers scored into his own net, and the Colorado Avalanche beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 on Friday night.

Bourque was given the score after Ehlers backhanded the puck through the legs of teammate Toby Enstrom and past goaltender Michael Hutchinson 1:23 into overtime.

“I felt some pressure from two guys and thought I had some support,” Ehlers said. “I tried to get the puck off the boards and to Toby. The puck got past him and into the net.”

Bourque wasn’t bothered by the way he got credit for the goal.

“I’ll take 20 more of those,” he said. “I was just behind the net and it kind of got moved to the corner and we were still battling two-on-two and he got the loose puck and just fired it. I didn’t even see it.”

Mikko Rantanen scored his first career goal and Semyon Varlamov had 16 saves for the Avalanche, who lost center Matt Duchene to a head injury suffered in the second period.

“I know they said in the intermission they were going to take a look at him and then I got word on the bench he wasn’t coming back,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. “I’m hoping he’s going to be back (soon), but I have to talk with them and see what the plan is for him. He’s played real well for us. He’s been the driving force to the bulk of our offense this season.”

Blake Wheeler had a goal and an assist, Mark Scheifele also scored and Ehlers had two assists. Hutchinson finished with 25 saves two weeks after blanking Colorado here.

Varlamov didn’t face many shots but came up with a big save in overtime when he stopped Wheeler on a breakaway, and moments later Bourque scored.

“I never thought the game would end the way it,” Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice said. “The pass went to the net and it should never had gotten through. But that play wasn’t the reason we lost tonight.”

Rantanen, who played in nine games last season and started this year in the AHL, got his first goal 1:03 into the second period. He got the puck at the right circle, looked for a passing lane before putting one off Hutchinson’s shoulder and in just 15 seconds into Colorado’s power play.

“They gave me enough room,” Rantanen said. “I tried to look first, look (for a) tip for (Gabriel Landeskog) but it wasn’t open so I just tried to rip it over the glove and this time it went in.”

Bourque gave Colorado a 2-0 lead at 9:33 of the second, his third goal of the season.

The Jets wiped out the lead with goals 2:33 apart. Wheeler got Winnipeg within with 6:33 left and Scheifele tied it with a power-play goal later in the period.

Winnipeg defenseman Jacob Trouba made his season debut after signing a two-year deal with the team Monday. Trouba was a restricted free agent and held out to start the season.

Trouba had two shots on goal in 23:14 of ice time.

“It was good. I didn’t really know too much what to expect,” Trouba said. “After the first period I thought I started feeling the puck a little better and making a couple better reads. Obviously there is some adjusting, overall I thought it was pretty well.”

Notes: Former Avalanche star and Hockey Hall of Famer Peter Forsberg was in attendance. … Colorado RW Blake Comeau missed his third straight game with a groin injury. … Winnipeg C Mathieu Perreault missed his fifth straight game with an upper-body injury. … Avalanche RW Jarome Iginla played in his 1,487th career game to tie Wayne Gretzky for 18th all time.

Up next

Jets: Host Los Angeles on Sunday.

Avalanche: Host Boston on Sunday.