Maple Leafs one of three NHL teams hoping home cookin' flips … – Boston Herald

DENVER — Nathan MacKinnon is counting on 18,000 of his rowdy friends to give the Colorado Avalanche a little bit of an extra buzz.

Maybe even throw Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne off his game.

Trailing the top-seeded Predators 2-0 in the first-round series, the Avalanche return Monday (10 p.m. EDT, NBCSN) to a building that’s certainly been something to write home about this season. Their 28 wins at the Pepsi Center in the regular season tied the franchise mark held by the 2000-01 squad that went on to capture the Stanley Cup.

“We have lots of confidence here,” said MacKinnon , whose team has dropped 12 straight to the Predators. “The building has been a lot of fun this year.”

Colorado isn’t the only team hoping a change of scenery provides a change in momentum — Toronto returns to friendly confines down 2-0 in the series against Boston (7 p.m., NBCSN). The New Jersey Devils are in the same boat versus Tampa Bay (7:30 p.m., CNBC) heading into their first playoff home game since 2012.

Then there’s the San Jose Sharks, who are sitting pretty after two road wins against Anaheim (10:30 p.m., CNBC). Now at home, the Sharks get last change and the opportunity to dictate matchups.

“It’s a nice luxury being at home, having those matchups,” Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. “The bigger advantage is the crowd and the environment and being able to sleep in your own bed.”

For New Jersey, climbing back in the series boils down to this — avoiding big early deficits. They trailed the Lightning 3-0 in Game 1 and 5-1 in Game 2 before staging a comeback.

“We need to play as a group,” said coach John Hynes, who plans to make some lineup changes. “We can’t have passengers.”

MacKinnon said the

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