for this game

Theodore helps injury-plagued Avalanche beat Blue Jackets

Jan 21, 2008 - 4:45 AM
By Dave Reed PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

DENVER (Ticker) -- Without three of their top offensive weapons, the Colorado Avalanche got a monster performance from their less-recognizable players in a 3-1 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday night at Pepsi Center.

The Avalanche got a goal from defenseman Jeff Finger, an assist from David Jones and 26 saves from Jose Theodore - three players who have spent time this season with the Lake Erie Monsters of the American Hockey League - to continue their mastery of the Blue Jackets in Denver.

Tyler Arnason and Ben Guite also tallied for Colorado, which improved to 13-1-0 all-time at home against Columbus even without captain Joe Sakic, Ryan Smyth and All-Star Paul Stastny.

"With three of our top dogs out, it's going to be huge for us to get contributions from everybody," Finger said. "Jose has been playing unbelievable, and I think it all starts there."

Theodore continued his run of stellar play, improving to 5-2-1 in eight consecutive starts. He has allowed just 13 goals over that span.

"Things are going well," Theodore said. "The players are playing so well in front of me. Communication with the defensemen is great. They are letting me see the puck and taking care of the rebounds."

Finger gave the Avalanche a 1-0 lead when his slap shot from the right point slipped past goaltender Pascal Leclaire with 2:04 remaining in the first period.

Jaroslav Hlinka sent a pass up the right wing boards, and Ian Laperriere screened Leclaire just as Finger unleashed his shot. Finger now has a point in four of the last five games.

"Hlinka made an unbelievable play on the boards, and I had a ton of time," Finger said. "I saw Laperriere going, he timed it perfectly and the goalie never saw a thing. I give the credit to those two guys on that play."

John-Michael Liles had a chance to get the Avalanche on the board with just over five minutes remaining in the session, but Leclaire gloved the blue-liner's wrist shot from the between the faceoff circles while Colorado was on a 4-on-3 power play.

Colorado doubled its lead 7:40 into the second period, when Guite knocked in the rebound of a shot by Jones, who was playing in just his third NHL game. Laperriere started the play in the neutral zone to earn his second assist of the night.

"David Jones made a quick shot on net, made a nice move between the two Ds," Guite said. "I think it kind of surprised (Leclaire). He never got a handle on it and I was just whacking at it."

Leclaire thought he had control of the puck and believed the play should have been blown dead.

"I was pretty sure it was under me," he said. "The guy kept whacking at it. He had two or three shots at it."

Theodore's biggest save came with 6:58 remaining in the middle session, when he went post to post to rob All-Star Rick Nash on a wrist shot from the bottom of the left circle.

"It could have been a different game," said Fredrik Modin, who later scored the only goal for the Blue Jackets. "He comes up with a huge save for them. The chances were there. He made a great save at a good time."

Arnason put the Avalanche ahead, 3-0, early in the third, taking a feed from Wojtek Wolski at the bottom of the left circle and beating Leclaire, who was frozen by a fake by Wolski in the slot.

The Blue Jackets ended Theodore's shutout bid 40 seconds later as Modin put a wrister from the left circle over the netminder's right shoulder after taking a feed from behind the net by Nash.

It was Modin's first goal of the season in just his second contest since returning from a back injury that sidelined him for 35 games.

"It does feel good, no doubt about that," Modin said. "We should have had a few more, but it didn't happen tonight."






  • 10
    roots
    DanSportsfan Added 5 roots

    Blue Jackets vs. AvalancheJan 22 11:06 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLUMBUS 0 0 1 1
    COLORADO 1 1 1 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - JEFF FINGER 4 (JAROSLAV HLINKA, IAN LAPERRIERE) 17:56
    2ND PRD: COL - BEN GUITE 4 (DAVID JONES, IAN LAPERRIERE) 7:40
    3RD PRD: COL - TYLER ARNASON 4 (WOJTEK WOLSKI, MAREK SVATOS) 3:33
    COB - FREDRIK MODIN 1 (RICK N

    Jan 20 10:26 PM


  • NHL
    COLUMBUS 1
    COLORADO 3
    3RD PRD: COB - FREDRIK MODIN 1 (RICK NASH, DERRICK BRASSARD) 4:13

    Blue Jackets vs. AvalancheJan 20 10:00 PM


  • NHL
    COLUMBUS 0
    COLORADO 3
    3RD PRD: COL - TYLER ARNASON 4 (WOJTEK WOLSKI, MAREK SVATOS) 3:33

    Blue Jackets vs. AvalancheJan 20 9:59 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLUMBUS 0 0 0
    COLORADO 1 1 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - JEFF FINGER 4 (JAROSLAV HLINKA, IAN LAPERRIERE) 17:56
    2ND PRD: COL - DAVID JONES 1 (BEN GUITE, IAN LAPERRIERE) 7:40
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COB 7 9

    Jan 20 9:36 PM


  • NHL
    COLUMBUS 0
    COLORADO 2
    2ND PRD: COL - DAVID JONES 1 (BEN GUITE, IAN LAPERRIERE) 7:40

    Blue Jackets vs. AvalancheJan 20 9:15 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLUMBUS 0 0
    COLORADO 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: COL - JEFF FINGER 4 (JAROSLAV HLINKA, IAN LAPERRIERE) 17:56
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COB 7 7
    COL 7 7
    GOALIES: COB - PASCAL LECLAI

    Jan 20 8:42 PM


  • NHL
    COLUMBUS 0
    COLORADO 1
    1ST PRD: COL - JEFF FINGER 4 (JAROSLAV HLINKA, IAN LAPERRIERE) 17:56

    Blue Jackets vs. AvalancheJan 20 8:40 PM
  • 5
    roots
    barleycorn Added 5 roots

    Blue Jackets vs. AvalancheJan 20 3:19 PM