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Pair of Late Goals Lift Avs To 5-3 Win Over Edmonton

by Staff Writer / Colorado Avalanche
DENVER (AP) -- Patrice Brisebois and Steve Konowalchuk scored in the final minute to help the Colorado Avalanche beat Edmonton 5-3 on Tuesday night to extend the Oilers' losing streak to seven games.

Brisebois, playing in his 800th NHL game, slammed a slap shot from the right point over goalie Jussi Markkanen's shoulder with 48 seconds left. With the crowd still going wild, Konowalchuk beat Markkanen 19 seconds later to make it 5-3.

It was a stunning finish for the Avalanche, who lost twice after blowing a pair of three-goal leads in their most recent homestand and fell behind 3-2 in this one after going up by two in the second period.

And it added yet another sad chapter to Edmonton's woeful losing streak.

The Oilers lost 7-1 to the Avalanche in Edmonton last Friday to extend the streak to six in a game Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish called "tragic," "comical," and a "stand-alone product for ineptitude."

MacTavish promised big changes if things didn't improve quickly, and for most of this one, the Oilers hardly resembled the noncompetitive team that had been outscored 23-8 during the losing streak.

In fact, it was the Avalanche who looked bad in squandering yet another lead. Raffi Torres scored two goals, the second giving the Oilers a 3-2 lead early in the third period on the kind of defensive breakdown common during Colorado's most recent struggles at home.

Torres took a pass along the boards beyond the blue line and skated unhindered to the middle of the ice with two Avalanche defenders doing nothing to stop him.

He flipped a backhander over David Aebischer's right shoulder, a shot Aebischer (25 saves) should have seen easily, simply because there were no other Oilers anywhere near.

But a few minutes later, Alex Tanguay tied the game at 3 on an equally embarrassing goal for the Oilers -- slapping the puck off an Edmonton player's stick from behind the net and in past Markkanen, who never saw the play.

Markkanen, the new full-time goalie now that Ty Conklin has been sent down to Hamilton, finished with 26 saves.

Antti Laaksonen and Wojtek Wolski had the first two goals for Colorado.

Game notes
Michael Peca, one of the more notable offseason acquisitions for the Oilers, went scoreless and stayed stuck on one goal for the season. ... Dan Hinote missed his fourth straight game for Colorado because of a back injury.

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