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Hejduk scores disputed winning shootout goal as Avalanche edge Lightning 2-1 @NHL

TAMPA, Fla. - Milan Hejduk was awarded the lone goal in a shootout when Tampa Bay goalie Mike Smith was penalized for throwing his stick, and the Colorado Avalanche beat the Lightning 2-1 on Thursday night.

Smith's stick came loose when he was making a save on Hejduk's backhander. After discussing the play for several minutes, the officials awarded the goal.

As Tampa Bay interim coach Rick Tocchet argued the call, some fans threw debris onto the ice.

Paul Stastny had the Colorado goal in regulation, and Andrew Raycroft stopped 37 shots.

Jeff Halpern, playing in his first game of the season after being sidelined by a knee injury, scored for Tampa Bay, which has lost 16 of 18. Smith made 34 saves.

Stastny put Colorado up 1-0 from in close at 3:46 of the first.

Halpern, who had reconstructive surgery on his knee in June, tied it at one from the slot at 7:35 of the second. The centre was hurt during while playing for the United States at the world hockey championships.

The Lightning almost won it with 1:09 left in overtime, but Martin St. Louis' backhander hit the post.

Tampa Bay is 4-14 in one-goal games this season.

Notes: Lightning LW Ryan Malone (upper body) returned after missing five games. ... Colorado RW Darcy Tucker was in the lineup after missing 11 games due to a knee injury. RW Ben Guite played after sitting out 17 games because of injured ribs. ... Tampa Bay recalled G Karri Ramo from Norfolk (AHL) on an emergency basis to replace injured backup G Olie Kolzig (upper body). ... Avalanche RW Marek Svatos (back) missed his fourth consecutive game. ... Tampa Bay LW Gary Roberts said he will probably retire after the season. He is currently out with an elbow injury.

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