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Stastny's Two Goals Lift Avalanche Past Flames 4-3

by Staff Writer / Colorado Avalanche

DENVER (AP) - Paul Stastny had two goals and an assist, and Peter Budaj stopped 33 shots - including 16 in the third period - as the Colorado Avalanche beat the Calgary Flames 4-3 on Tuesday night.

Marek Svatos scored the winning goal 1:24 into the third period. Milan Hejduk added a goal and an assist, and Joe Sakic had two assists.

Calgary and Colorado faced each other for the third time in six days. The teams split two games in Calgary last week.

Budaj has given up 16 goals in his last four starts against the Flames, but was at his best early in the third period when Calgary had a 5-on-3 advantage. He even took a point-blank shot square in the mask.

Stastny's two power-play tallies in the first period gave him 21 goals for the year.Stastny has 53 points this season, breaking the Avalanche record for the most by a rookie. Former Colorado player Alex Tanguay, who now plays for Calgary, set the mark with 51 in the 1999-00 season. Stastny's father, Peter, has the franchise record - scoring 109 with Quebec during the 1980-81 season.

Kristian Huselius had a goal and an assist, raising his season total to five goals and five assists against the Avalanche.

The Flames and Avalanche have combined for 43 goals in five games this season.

The Avalanche moved into a fourth-place tie with Edmonton in the Northwest Division. Colorado still trails Minnesota by nine points for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

Tony Amonte and Dion Phaneuf scored in the first period for Calgary.

During a timeout after Stastny's first goal, Sakic was honored for scoring his 600th goal. He hit the milestone last Thursday night at Calgary, and was honored by the home crowd with a standing ovation.

With his two assists, Sakic is on a season-high, nine-game point streak.


The Avalanche said Tuesday that defenseman Jordan Leopold will miss approximately four weeks because of a fractured wrist. Leopold, injured in the third period against Calgary on Thursday, has had three significant injuries this season. He missed the first 25 games while recovering from hernia surgery and then another 17 due to a groin injury sustained in December.

"Tough year," Avalanche coach Joel Quenneville said. "Another tough blow."

Rookie forward Wojtek Wolski missed his second game with a concussion after running into Calgary's Craig Conroy on Saturday night. Calgary rookie David Moss sustained a head injury in the same game on a hit by Colorado defenseman Ossi Vaananen. Moss didn't join the team on a two-game road trip.

Colorado D Jeff Finger, recently called up from Albany (AHL), made his NHL debut. He played 7:51 with no shots. ... Sakic was chosen as one of the NHL's three stars of last week. Sakic had two goals and six assists in four games. ... Flames captain Jarome Iginla had his 39th assist of the season on Huselius' goal.
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