for this game

Stastny stars as Avalanche top Lightning

Jan 6, 2007 - 6:11 AM
DENVER (Ticker) -- Paul Stastny is displaying talent beyond his years.

Stastny scored a goal and set up two others and defenseman Karlis Skrastins added two assists as the Colorado Avalanche skated to a 4-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning.

A second-round pick in 2005, the 21-year-old Stastny entered Friday tied with teammate Wojtek Wolski in rookie scoring with 29 points. The son of Hall of Famer Peter Stastny, he assisted on tallies by captain Joe Sakic and Milan Hejduk before sealing the win with his 10th goal late in the third period.

"It was important to have a big third period, especially with the one-goal lead," Paul Stastny said. "We didn't want to give up anything. These are games that, towards the end of the year, we need the wins. I think it is a confidence builder for us."

With the three-point effort, Paul Stastny climbed within one point of Los Angeles' Anze Kopitar (35) for second among first-year players. Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin leads all rookies with 39 points.

Paul Stastny is in his first season as a professional after spending the last two campaigns at the University of Denver. Avalanche coach Joel Quenneville is concerned whether the youngster will have enough stamina for a late-season push and the playoffs.

"We've talked about that, where he may not have the same energy and if he'll be effective the rest of the way," Quenneville said. "Well, we'll find out."

Tyler Arnason scored what proved to be the winning goal and Peter Budaj made 26 saves for Colorado, which has won two in a row following a three-game slide.

"In the past, sometimes we've sat back on our heels and tried to rely on defense," Paul Stastny said. "That is what has gotten us in trouble. Budaj made a couple of big saves for us tonight."

"It was a team win tonight," Budaj said. "We scored four goals and we were playing well at the start."

Vincent Lecavalier had a goal and an assist for the Lightning, who have dropped four of six.

Tampa Bay's Marc Denis turned aside 28 shots in falling to 1-11-1 lifetime against his former team.

"I'm definitely unhappy with how we came out in the third period," Denis said. "This might be the toughest part of our schedule - three games in four nights in three different time zones, and the last one playing at high altitude. But I don't think that's an excuse."

Sakic gave Colorado a 1-0 lead with a power-play goal, firing a wrist shot from the top of the slot past Denis with 3:17 to go in the first period for his 18th of the season.

Vaclav Prospal knotted the game 1:45 into the second, when he corralled a loose puck and deposited it into a vacant left side of the net. But Hejduk received a pass from Stastny while streaking down the slot and beat Denis at 3:17 to restore Colorado's lead.

"That's a big key to our success, guys like Joe and Milan," said Avalanche defenseman John-Michael Liles, who had an assist. "It opens up a lot of room for the other two lines, but for the defensemen as well. They are the reason we got two points tonight."

Lecavalier evened it 73 seconds later with a one-timer from the bottom of the right faceoff circle during a power play before Arnason redirected Skrastins' one-timer from the left point past Denis with 7:17 left in the session for a 3-2 advantage.

Stastny capped the scoring with a backhander with 1:50 remaining in the third.

"We couldn't come up with that big play to get back in the game," Tampa Bay's Brad Richards said. "Their goalie made some big saves and we missed a couple of nets. We didn't play a full 60 minutes."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAMPA BAY 0 2 0 2
    COLORADO 1 2 1 4 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - (PP) JOE SAKIC 18 (PAUL STASTNY, JOHN-MICHAEL LILES)
    16:43
    2ND PRD: TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 5 (ANDREAS KARLSSON, CORY SARICH) 1:45
    COL - MILAN HEJDUK 13 (PAUL STASTNY) 3:17
    TAM - (PP) VINCENT LECAVALIER 23 (DAN BO

    Jan 5 11:42 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 2
    COLORADO 4
    3RD PRD: COL - PAUL STASTNY 10 (ANDREW BRUNETTE, KARLIS SKRASTINS)
    18:10

    Lightning vs. AvalancheJan 5 11:23 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAMPA BAY 0 2 2
    COLORADO 1 2 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - (PP) JOE SAKIC 18 (PAUL STASTNY, JOHN-MICHAEL LILES)
    16:43
    2ND PRD: TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 5 (ANDREAS KARLSSON, CORY SARICH) 1:45
    COL - MILAN HEJDUK 13 (PAUL STASTNY) 3:17
    TAM - (PP) VINCENT LECAVALI

    Jan 5 10:48 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 2
    COLORADO 3
    2ND PRD: COL - (PP) TYLER ARNASON 11 (KARLIS SKRASTINS, BRETT CLARK)
    12:43

    Lightning vs. AvalancheJan 5 10:23 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 2
    COLORADO 2
    2ND PRD: TAM - (PP) VINCENT LECAVALIER 23 (DAN BOYLE, MARTIN ST.
    LOUIS) 4:30

    Lightning vs. AvalancheJan 5 10:08 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 1
    COLORADO 2
    2ND PRD: COL - MILAN HEJDUK 13 (PAUL STASTNY) 3:17

    Lightning vs. AvalancheJan 5 10:06 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 1
    COLORADO 1
    2ND PRD: TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 5 (ANDREAS KARLSSON, CORY SARICH) 1:45

    Lightning vs. AvalancheJan 5 10:04 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAMPA BAY 0 0
    COLORADO 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - (PP) JOE SAKIC 18 (PAUL STASTNY, JOHN-MICHAEL LILES)
    16:43
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAM 7 7
    COL 12 12
    GOALIES: TAM - MARC DE

    Jan 5 9:39 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 0
    COLORADO 1 3:17 LEFT, 1ST PRD

    Lightning vs. AvalancheJan 5 9:37 PM