Johnson scored the go-ahead goal against St. Louis, which traded him Saturday, and the Colorado Avalanche broke a 10-game losing streak by beating the Blues 4-3 at Scottrade Center on Tuesday night.
Johnson, the No. 1 pick in the 2006 Entry Draft, was traded from St. Louis to Colorado with Jay McClement for forward Chris Stewart and defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk, broke a 2-2 tie by scoring with 5:06 left.
"Such a great feeling -- a unique experience," Johnson said. "I don't think it can get any better than this."
He picked up a loose puck along the boards and zipped a shot past goalie Ty Conklin.
"I just wanted to make sure I didn't celebrate at the wrong bench," Johnson kidded. "I want to get to the right bench to make the fist pumps. It's a very wonderful feeling to score against your old team in your old building."
Paul Stastny, Milan Hedjuk and David Jones also scored for Colorado, and Peter Budaj made 42 saves for his fifth consecutive win over St. Louis. The Avalanche earned their seventh consecutive win over the Blues in a game that was rescheduled from Feb. 1 due to bad weather.
Johnson reiterated after the game that he was not bitter about the trade -- but he is intent on showing the Blues that they made a mistake.
"You never want to leave a place where you're comfortable," said Johnson, who received a loud ovation from the sellout crowd of 19,150. "Such is life. That's the way the business is. I thank everybody in St. Louis that helped me. But this is a great opportunity for me."
McClement was happy for Johnson.
"I haven't seen him that excited in a long time," McClement said. "He was pretty pumped. I'm happy. It's a pretty awesome time for him."
Stastny added what proved to be the game-winner when he whipped a backhander from the slot past Conklin with 2:38 left. Andy McDonald brought the Blues within 4-3 with his 14th goal 22 seconds later, but Budaj made a pair of key saves in the final minute to end the Avs' 0-9-1 slide -- the longest losing streak since the franchise moved from Quebec prior to the 1995-96 season.
"I think we can all breathe again," Colorado coach Joe Sacco said. "I almost forgot how it feels to win."
Colorado took a 2-0 lead with a pair of goals in the first 10:04 of the first period. Jones tipped in a pass from Stastny for his career-best 20th goal of the season. Hedjuk followed with a team-high eighth power-play goal and 18th overall. Hedjuk has scored at least 20 goals in each of the past 10 seasons.
Patrik Berglund got St. Louis on the board at 13:05 with his 16th goal of the season. Berglund extended his point-streak to a career-high seven games.
"We had some decent opportunities in the third period," St. Louis coach Davis Payne said. "Clearly (we) were not very good in the execution department."
St. Louis tied the game 2-2 at 17:20 of the second on a power-play goal by Stewart.
Stewart, who has three goals in three games with the Blues, felt his new club deserved a better fate.
"I didn't think they outplayed us," he said. "I thought we beat ourselves at times."
Material from team media and wire services was used in this report
|David Jones (20) ASST: Paul Stastny (29), John-Michael Liles (31)|
1 - 0 COL
|PPG - Milan Hejduk (18) ASST: John-Michael Liles (32), Paul Stastny (30)|
2 - 0 COL
|Patrik Berglund (16) ASST: T.J. Oshie (17), Alexander Steen (28)|
2 - 1 COL
|PPG - Chris Stewart (16) ASST: Kevin Shattenkirk (21), Brad Boyes (28)|
2 - 2 Tie
|Erik Johnson (6) ASST: NONE|
3 - 2 COL
|Paul Stastny (18) ASST: NONE|
4 - 2 COL
|Chris Stewart (17) ASST: Andy McDonald (16), Nikita Nikitin (3)|
4 - 3 COL
|Chris Stewart Tripping against Paul Stastny|
|Andy McDonald Interference against Jonas Holos|
|Jay McClement Tripping against Nikita Nikitin|
|Matt Hunwick Delaying Game - Puck over glass|
|Kevin Shattenkirk Interference against Brandon Yip|
|Carlo Colaiacovo Tripping against Brandon Yip|
|Andy McDonald Slashing against Milan Hejduk|