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Oilers Beat Avalanche In Shootout

by Staff Writer / Colorado Avalanche
DENVER (AP) -- Sergei Samsonov scored the lone shootout goal on the first attempt in the tiebreaker to help the Edmonton Oilers beat Colorado 4-3 on Sunday night, leaving the Avalanche tied for first place in the Northwest Division.

After Samsonov scored, Edmonton's Michael Peca and Ryan Smyth failed to get the puck past Avalanche goalie Peter Budaj.

The Oilers' Dwayne Roloson stopped Antti Laaksonen, Milan Hejduk and Joe Sakic in the shootout after making 31 saves in regulation and overtime.

Smyth, Jarret Stoll and Steve Staios scored in regulation for the Oilers, third in the division -- two points behind Colorado and Calgary.

Hejduk, Andrew Brunette and Jim Dowd scored goals for the Avalanche.

Stoll broke a 2-2 tie at 3:51 of the third period, deflecting a shot from Raffi Torres between Budaj's pads . Dowd tied it at 3 with his fifth season, scoring off a cross ice pass from Brad May.

Colorado spotted Edmonton a 1-0 lead on Smyth 33rd goal of the season, but led 2-1 after one period. Smyth deflected a shot from the right point past Budaj's stick to put the Oilers ahead 1-0. The power-play goal at 4:28 snapped Colorado's streak of not allowing a goal at home in 125 minutes, 50 seconds.

Brunette and Hejduk scored off rebounds. Roloson stopped John-Michael Liles' shot from in front of the crease, but it went right back to Brunette, who snapped it back in for his 19th goal at 6:49.

Hejduk scored at 14:55 after Brett Clark's slap shot from the right point was stopped. Hejduk skated around a pileup in front of the net and flipped the puck over Roloson.

Staios sent a slap shot off the left skate Colorado defenseman Karlis Skrastins' in the last minute of the second period to it at 2. Edmonton controlled play for most of the period despite being outshot 8-6.


The game was the 100th meeting between the two teams. ... Edmonton is 5-7-0-0 on the second night of back-to-back games. ... Colorado hadn't allowed a goal at home since Feb. 28 when Marian Gaborik of Minnesota scored at 18:38 of the third period. ... Sakic has a seven-game point streak.


Peter Budaj: General... "It's frustrating but it's good experience for us. We have to keep battling. Now we're tied for first place with Calgary but we have to step up and win most of those hockey games." On Samsonov's Goal... "He made a nice move. I think I was in good position. I wasn't too deep. I kind of want him to go glove side but he had a quick backhand. It was a good shot." On Shootouts... " I'm 0-5 (in shootouts). I got scored on and we didn't score any goals. But it's also tough for us to win those shootouts. Right now our team and also myself, I think when we get to the shootout we think about it more than we should. I think we're going to be good in the long run."

Jim Dowd: "It's disappointing to just get one point. But if you look at the bright side we just tied Calgary for first place. So, we'll take it from there. We'll always look at the bright side of things." On His Transition To Playing In Colorado... "It's been pretty easy. I came right in from Chicago there. Just switched locker rooms. I already knew a few of the guys...Laaksonen and Brunette. The rest of the guys I have played against for the last 12 or 13 years. So it's a good group of guys." On His Goal... "Dan Hinote made a good play off a faceoff. He pressured the puck and then (Brad) May drove to the net out from the corner. And I was all alone in front. Those two guys made the play I just put it in the net."

Craig MacTavish: "We got better as the game wore on. With our team, it's a situation where if we don't have everybody, we may get away with one or two guys not skating in the system that we play. We have four, five or six guys early that were feeling their way, so that's why it looked so sloppy. It's just a case of having the responsibility of getting themselves ready to play. Eventually we got a more collective effort."

Michael Peca: "Both teams went in bursts. Our team would have a burst for a little while. They tried to get a lead and sit on it and we'd do the same thing. We seemed to go back-and-forth that way so it's fitting that it went to a shootout. I think Dwayne (Roloson) silenced a lot of critics with his performance in the shootout. He made three great saves and gave us a chance to win."

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