April 16 (UPI) -- Colorado defenseman Cale Makar scored the first goal of his NHL career in the Avalanche's 6-2 win over the Calgary Flames in Game 3.
Makar's historic goal in the first period of Monday night's contest put him in exclusive company. He became only the fifth rookie in the NHL's expansion era (1967-68) to score in his NHL debut during the Stanley Cup playoffs.
The 20-year-old defenseman received a pass in the slot and held off a Calgary defender, slipping the puck past Flames goaltender Mike Smith. The goal gave the Avs a 3-0 lead in the first period.
Makar, a sophomore at UMass, competed in the men's hockey national championship game Saturday in Buffalo, where the Minutemen lost to Minnesota-Duluth. He signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Avs on Sunday and joined the team for his first NHL practice in Denver on Monday.
Makar's wild weekend also included capturing the Hobey Baker Memorial Award as college hockey's top player Friday night. He became only the second player to make his professional debut in the postseason in the same year he won the Hobey Baker Award, joining Tony Hrkac (St. Louis Blues, 1987).
Lauri Korpikoski was the last player to score in his first-ever NHL game during the playoffs. He notched a goal with the New York Rangers in 2008.
The Avalanche took a 2-1 series lead after their victory in Game 3. Colorado hosts the Flames on Wednesday night in Game 4.