Colorado Avalanche win Stanley Cup, depriving Tampa Bay of a third straight Stanley Cup victory


The Colorado Avalanche won the Stanley Cup for the first time since 2001 with a 2-1 victory against the defending champions the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final at Amalie Arena, Tampa Bay on Sunday.

Nathan MacKinnon had a goal and an assist, with Artturi Lehkonen netting the other goal for the Avalanche, who bounced back from a 3-2 loss in Game 5 at home on Friday.

It was the third time that Colorado have lifted the Cup in their history, having closed out each of its four series on the road, with a 9-1 record.

For Tampa Bay, it was disappointment for a side who were aiming to win the Stanley Cup for a remarkable three times in a row since the New York Islanders in 1980-3.

The Avalanche started the season as one of the favourites to lift the trophy in June, despite losing in the second round of the playoffs in each of the past three seasons.

Before the NHL trade deadline, Colorado added to their squad by acquiring defenseman Josh Manson from the Anaheim Ducks, Lehkonen from the Montreal Canadiens and forwards Andrew Cogliano from San Jose Sharks and Nico Sturm from the Minnesota Wild.

Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player of the playoffs after finishing third in the NHL with 29 points in 20 games this post season.

Since 2019, no team has been able to find a way past the Lightning, but Colorado discovered the right combination of skill, speed and determination needed to knock out the champions.

For the first time since the onset of the pandemic, the NHL has a new champion. Former player Joe Sakic- who was on the team that last won the trophy back in 2001- now general manager has built a side rich in talent.

The Avalanche finished with an overall franchise record of 119 points and were the best team in the Western Conference.

Some experienced NHL veterans with the Avalanche have now picked up their first Stanley Cup title, including Jack Johnson who is now in his 15th season with the Avs. Andrew Cogliano in his 14th season and Erik Johnson in his 13th.

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