for this game

Hejduk records hat trick as Avalanche stay in playoff race

Apr 6, 2007 - 8:31 AM
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (Ticker) -- Milan Hejduk single-handedly kept the Colorado Avalanche's slim playoff hopes alive.

Hejduk recorded his fourth career hat trick - and second of the season - as the Avalanche posted a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.

Goaltender Peter Budaj made 17 saves for Colorado (43-30-7), which is 14-1-2 since February 27, but trails Calgary (43-27-10) by three points with two games left in the battle for the final Western Conference playoff spot.

"This was a big game for us, another big two points," Hejduk said. "We put some pressure on Calgary and we'll see how they respond. We didn't know (Calgary was down), but we know we have to do our part and win all the games for the rest of the regular season, and we need some help from other teams."

Hejduk opened the scoring just 25 seconds in the opening period. After Sami Salo tied the game with a tally 7:59 in to the second session, Hejduk sealed the win with two goals in the third period.

He beat Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo the same way with both tallies. Hejduk slid the puck low to the blocker side just inside the left post - beating Luongo on two seemingly identical plays - capped by his 34th goal of the season 10:54 into the final session.

"I had some other chances too, but (Luongo) made some big saves," Hejduk said. "The blocker was not there, for sure, but two goals on the blocker side, I don't know if it was luck or whatever."

The Canucks were denied their second division title in three seasons. Vancouver (48-25-7) is just one point ahead of Minnesota (47-26-8) in the Northwest Division.

"A little bit surprised and disappointed," Canucks right wing Markus Naslund said. "We could have clinched our division tonight and we didn't take advantage of that. We have to definitely play a lot better than we have. Not just this game, but the last few games."

Luongo had 27 saves for the Canucks, who are two points shy of breaking a franchise record for points in a season set in 2003-04.

"It was a disappointing effort," Luongo said. "We finished the regular season at home on a pretty bad note, there. We're not happy with it."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 1 0 2 3
    VANCOUVER 1 0 0 1 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - MILAN HEJDUK 32 (PAUL STASTNY, KURT SAUER) 0:25
    VAN - SAMI SALO 14 (MATT COOKE, BRENDAN MORRISON) 7:59
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: COL - MILAN HEJDUK 33 (PAUL STASTNY) 6:57
    COL - MILAN HEJDUK 34 (BRETT MCLEAN, PAUL S

    Apr 6 12:26 AM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 3
    VANCOUVER 1
    3RD PRD: COL - MILAN HEJDUK 34 (BRETT MCLEAN, PAUL STASTNY) 10:54

    Avalanche vs. CanucksApr 6 12:10 AM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 2
    VANCOUVER 1
    3RD PRD: COL - MILAN HEJDUK 33 (PAUL STASTNY) 6:57

    Avalanche vs. CanucksApr 6 12:01 AM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 1 0 1
    VANCOUVER 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - MILAN HEJDUK 32 (PAUL STASTNY, KURT SAUER) 0:25
    VAN - SAMI SALO 14 (MATT COOKE, BRENDAN MORRISON) 7:59
    2ND PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COL 9 8

    Apr 5 11:33 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 1
    VANCOUVER 1 11:45 LEFT, 2ND PRD

    Avalanche vs. CanucksApr 5 11:13 PM