Edmonton Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft rued a critical three-goal second period after his side went 4-0 down to the Colorado Avalanche in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals on Thursday.

Nazem Kadri had three assists within the space of 2:04 as the Avalanche broke the game open and took a commanding 2-0 series lead, in a departure from Game 1's 14 goals and 84 shots.

The free-scoring Oilers were reduced to 24 shots for the night, with the two points leaders for this year's Stanley Cup playoffs in Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl kept quiet by the Avalanche.

Despite the second period, Woodcroft believes there is still cause for encouragement as the series heads to Canada.

"I thought it was a really competitive first period," he said post-game. "I thought we laid it on the line, especially finding ourselves down short-handed six minutes or so into the first period.

"We pushed back, we generated some offence, and that little span in the second period really hurt us. It took the wind out of our sails and we weren't able to generate what we wanted to as the game wore on.

"I think we've had some chances – not as much as we'd like – but we're in the final four and the other team does some good stuff too. There's more to be had there. We can do a better job of shooting the puck and shooting through structure."

Kadri tied GM Joe Sakic's franchise record from 1996 for most assists in a period, setting up Artturi Lehkonen and Josh Manson in the space of 15 seconds, before providing the pass for Mikko Rantanen.

Nathan McKinnon scored his sixth goal of the playoffs late in the third period, moving to a team-high 16 points over the Avalanche's three series.

Nazem Kadri scored a decisive hat-trick for the Colorado Avalanche against the St. Louis Blues in Game 4, having been determined to perform after alleging threats and racist abuse.

Avalanche center Kadri was involved in a collision with Jordan Binnington in Game 3, bringing a premature end to the Blues goaltender's series.

Former NHL player Akim Aliu revealed on Twitter on Sunday he had subsequently spoken to Kadri, who he said had "been subject to so many racist attacks and threats since last night that police had to be brought in".

The Avalanche confirmed they were aware of threats made towards their player – a Muslim of Lebanese descent – and were working with local law enforcement to investigate.

In the meantime, Kadri responded on the ice with three goals in Monday's 6-3 win to put the Avalanche 3-1 up and on the brink of the Western Conference Finals.

"I wanted to come out tonight and really put a mark on this game, especially after what happened," Kadri said. "I tried to do that as best as possible.

"Sometimes you've got to be patient, and you've got to wait. I was able to strike early in the second period and was able to get the mojo going."

He added of the incidents: "People need to be aware this stuff still happens, and it's hurtful."

Speaking ahead of Game 4, Blues coach Craig Berube – who had questioned Kadri's role in Binnington's injury, referencing his "reputation" in an apparent nod to previous postseason suspensions – said of the threats: "I've got no comment on that stuff."

St. Louis Blues coach Craig Berube sent a veiled shot at Nazem Kadri, after the Colorado Avalanche defeated his team 5-2 to take Game 3 in their playoff series.

Kadri bowled over Blues starting goaltender Jordan Binnington less than seven minutes into the first period, forcing him to leave the game with a lower-body injury.

Binnington, who made three saves in as many attempts to that point, was replaced by Ville Husso, who stopped 19 of 23 shots.

Berube did not overtly blame Kadri for the collision following the defeat, but made reference to his notoriously frenetic and aggressive style.

"Look at Kadri's reputation," Beurbe said post-game. "That's all I've got to say.

"There are a lot of calls you can question. That's hockey. I'm not going to sit here and talk about calls, that weren't called or called, it's just not worth it.

"I can be disappointed but talking about it is not going to change it."

The Western Conference's first seed took a 2-1 series lead on the back of a Artturi Lehkonen brace and 29 saves from Darcy Kuemper.

Kadri, Logan O'Connor and Gabriel Landeskog also scored for the Avalanche, who bounced back from a 4-1 loss on their home ice on Thursday.

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