Colorado Avalanche defenseman Bo Byram (4) congratulates center Nathan MacKinnon,...

Colorado Avalanche defenseman Bo Byram (4) congratulates center Nathan MacKinnon, top, after MacKinnon scored in the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Arizona Coyotes, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2024, in Denver. Credit: AP/David Zalubowski

DENVER — Nathan MacKinnon sees the game on a different level these days. So, too, does the Colorado Avalanche's video crew.

Devon Toews scored the go-ahead goal with 6:35 remaining, MacKinnon had a goal and an assist to give him at least a point in all 26 home games and the Avalanche beat Arizona 4-3 on Sunday night, extending the Coyotes’ skid to nine in a row.

Playing a big role was video coach Brett Heimlich, who alerted head coach Jared Bednar of a potential offsides when the Coyotes scored a tiebreaking goal in the third period. Colorado challenged and while the review took a long time — and had Bednar nervous — it was successful.

Simply that kind of stress-filled, grind-it-out performance for Colorado.

“There are no easy games in this league,” said defenseman Jack Johnson, whose squad responded after a team meeting following their return from a road swing where they went 1-4-1.

MacKinnon extended his point streak this season at Ball Arena with a second-period goal. His home point streak is the second-longest to open a season in NHL history, trailing only Wayne Gretzky’s 40-game mark, set during the 1988-89 season with the Los Angeles Kings.

“It’s an incredible feat,” said Johnson, who scored his first goal since Dec. 16 and also added an assist. “The way (MacKinnon) prepares every day, and the way he takes care of himself, on top of his natural abilities, I’m not surprised.”

Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon, left, fights for control of...

Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon, left, fights for control of the puck with Arizona Coyotes defenseman Matt Dumba in the first period of an NHL hockey game, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2024, in Denver. Credit: AP/David Zalubowski

Ross Colton also scored as the Avalanche returned home for the first time since Jan. 26. Colorado overcame two one-goal deficits in moving to a league-best 21-5 on home ice this season.

Alexandar Georgiev stopped 28 shots for Colorado, including several in the final 80 seconds after Artturi Lehkonen was called for a tripping penalty and the Coyotes pulled their goaltender.

Matt Dumba, Lawson Crouse and Logan Cooley scored for Arizona, which hasn't won since Jan. 22. Karel Vejmelka made 33 saves.

“It looks like we’re in that kind of a slump right now where whatever we do, there’s always a bad bounce or something,” said Coyotes coach André Tourigny, whose team is 0-8-1 over their slide. “Extremely proud of the effort.”

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Matt Dumba, front, falls to the ice...

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Matt Dumba, front, falls to the ice after putting the puck past Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar, center, and goaltender Alexandar Georgiev for a goal in the first period of an NHL hockey game, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2024, in Denver. Credit: AP/David Zalubowski

Both teams had potential go-ahead goals in the third period overturned for offsides on challenges. First, Alex Kerfoot's goal was disallowed after a lengthy review. It was ruled he didn't keep his skate onside before grabbing the puck out of the air on a breakaway.

About 30 seconds later, Jonathan Drouin's goal was taken off the board when Arizona successfully challenged that Mikko Rantanen entered the offensive zone too soon.

“They made the right call on all of them,” Bednar said.

Toews scored the winner with a wrist shot to the stick side of Vejmelka. The Coyotes nearly responded with 4:56 remaining, sending a puck into the net, only to have the whistle blow before it slid by Georgiev.

A big moment in the game came late in the second period, when Colorado had a four-minute power play after Mackinnon was hit by Adam Ruzicka’s stick on his already broken nose that drew blood. The Coyotes weathered the storm to keep the game tied at 3.

Arizona was outshot in the middle period by a 21-5 margin. Still, the team took a momentary lead on Cooley's score. It lasted all of 21 seconds before MacKinnon scored the equalizer when he whacked at a loose puck several times at the goal line, before knocking it past the leg pad of Vejmelka. The Coyotes challenged the play for goaltender interference, but the ruling of a goal was upheld. They were 5 for 5 in challenges heading into the game.

Colorado forward Chris Wagner played 6:19 and had no shots in his season debut. The veteran worked his way back from a ruptured Achilles he suffered in the offseason.

“He had a good game,” Bednar said.

UP NEXT

Coyotes: Host Edmonton on Monday.

Avalanche: Host Vancouver on Tuesday.

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