for this game

Hlinka, Wolski help Avalanche win in Smyth's return to Edmonton

Oct 24, 2007 - 5:49 AM
EDMONTON, Alberta (Ticker) -- The return of Ryan Smyth was the only thing the Edmonton Oilers faithful had to cheer about.

Wojtek Wolski's scored the go-ahead goal and Tyler Arnason recorded a tally and an assist as the Colorado Avalanche posted a 4-2 victory over the Oilers on Tuesday.

Jaroslav Hlinka also tallied and Peter Budaj stopped 25 shots for Colorado, which picked up its first road win of the season in five tries.

"We need the win in the worst way," Colorado coach Joel Quenneville said. "I think we're doing whatever we could to get a road win. We went out and played a very simple, ugly hockey game. Not a lot of chances either way. It was basically a pretty bad month."

Smyth, who spent the first 12 years of his career in Edmonton before being traded to the New York Islanders at the deadline last season, was a fan favorite and received a standing ovation as well as a video tribute.

"It was obviously very emotional," Smyth said. "It was a very nice gesture, a nice tribute to myself and my family. It's quite an honor to come back to the city you started your NHL career and be recognized like I was tonight. The fans were really great, and I really appreciate that.

"They got me. It was tough. They did a nice tribute on the jumbotron and a lot of things run thorugh your mind. With the pictures flashing through, the beard, the no teeth, when I was a little kid, my hair straight and tied back. It was a lot of memories I'll treasure."

Nicknamed "Captain Canada," Smyth held a tearful news conference when he was traded. He signed a five-year, $31 million free-agent contract with Colorado in the offseason.

"Our fans, they really have a good perspective with these things," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. "It's very well-covered and they never surprise me that they have such good perspective in events like this. Ryan didn't have the puck that much in the game, but when he did, they were ready to boo him when he had it (but didn't), which I thought was appropriate as well."

Once the pregame festivities were over, Hlinka put Colorado up, 2-1, in an action-packed first period that saw three goals scored in less than three minutes.

After the Oilers tied the game at 1-1 with 12:02 left in the first, the Avalanche regained the lead just 24 seconds later as Hlinka buried a rebound off a slap shot by defenseman John-Michael Liles for his first career goal and a 2-1 edge.

A little more than six minutes later, Wolski scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal as he slipped a rebound past sprawled goaltender Dwayne Roloson with 2:17 left in the period.

"I thought we played well," MacTavish said. "We had a lapse in the game of about seven or eight minutes, and it cost us three goals. We had trouble protecting the front of the net in that time period. Other than that, I thought we played very well."

With Colorado leading, 3-2, defenseman Brett Clark iced the game with an empty-net goal in the final minute.

Wolski's tally proved to be crucial as Edmonton pulled within 3-2 with 9:15 left in the third. Rookie Sam Gagner dug out the puck from behind the net and sent it to Dustin Penner, who fed blue-liner Tom Gilbert in the crease for an easy goal.

However, the Avalanche held on, making Smyth's return a happy one.

Arnason staked the Avalanche to an early lead as he stole a pass in his own zone, led a 2-on-1 rush and blasted a slap shot into the right corner of the net for a 1-0 advantage at 9:44.

Edmonton wasted little time answering.

Andrew Cogliano and Penner cashed in during a 2-on-1 rush just 2:17 later. Cogliano skated down the left wing and, as the defender fell, passed to Penner, who beat Budaj with a one-timer to knot the game at 1-1 with 7:58 left in the period.

Roloson stopped 18 shots for Edmonton, which has lost six of seven.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 3 0 1 4
    EDMONTON 1 0 1 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - TYLER ARNASON 2 (UNASSISTED) 9:49
    EDM - DUSTIN PENNER 2 (ANDREW COGLIANO, SAM GAGNER) 12:02
    COL - JAROSLAV HLINKA 1 (JOHN-MICHAEL LILES, TYLER ARNASON)
    12:25
    COL - WOJTEK WOLSKI 3 (JEFF FINGER, JOE SAKIC) 18:43

    Oct 24 12:02 AM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 4
    EDMONTON 2
    3RD PRD: COL - (EN) BRETT CLARK 1 (BEN GUITE, WYATT SMITH) 19:42

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 24 12:01 AM
  • 5
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 17 roots

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 24 12:01 AM
  • 22
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 17 roots (Close Finish)

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 11:57 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 3
    EDMONTON 2
    3RD PRD: EDM - TOM GILBERT 2 (DUSTIN PENNER, SAM GAGNER) 10:45

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 11:47 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 3 0 3
    EDMONTON 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - TYLER ARNASON 2 (UNASSISTED) 9:49
    EDM - DUSTIN PENNER 2 (ANDREW COGLIANO, SAM GAGNER) 12:02
    COL - JAROSLAV HLINKA 1 (JOHN-MICHAEL LILES, TYLER ARNASON)
    12:25
    COL - WOJTEK WOLSKI 3 (JEFF FINGER, JOE

    Oct 23 11:09 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 3 3
    EDMONTON 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - TYLER ARNASON 2 (UNASSISTED) 9:49
    EDM - DUSTIN PENNER 2 (ANDREW COGLIANO, SAM GAGNER) 12:02
    COL - JAROSLAV HLINKA 1 (JOHN-MICHAEL LILES, TYLER ARNASON)
    12:25
    COL - JEFF FINGER 1 (JOE SAKIC, ANDREW

    Oct 23 10:14 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 3
    EDMONTON 1
    1ST PRD: COL - JEFF FINGER 1 (JOE SAKIC, ANDREW BRUNETTE) 18:43

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 10:14 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 2
    EDMONTON 1
    1ST PRD: COL - JAROSLAV HLINKA 1 (JOHN-MICHAEL LILES, TYLER ARNASON)
    12:25

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 10:00 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 1
    EDMONTON 1
    1ST PRD: EDM - DUSTIN PENNER 2 (ANDREW COGLIANO, SAM GAGNER) 12:02

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 9:59 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 1
    EDMONTON 0
    1ST PRD: COL - TYLER ARNASON 2 (UNASSISTED) 9:49

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 9:54 PM
  • 5
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    OddyOh Added 5 roots

    Avalanche vs. OilersOct 23 7:35 PM