Smyth, Hejduk Each Notch #300
Forwards Reach 300 Career Goals in Same Contest
Sunday, 01.18.2009 / 10:23 PM / Features
By Aaron Lopez - Special to ColoradoAvalanche.com
In Case You Missed It
-After playing primarily on the left wing Friday against Edmonton, Kyle Cumiskey was once again in the lineup tonight, but back at his natural position of defense.
-The Avalanche outshot the Flames by a 20-8 margin in the opening frame.
-Chris Stewart notched his fifth goal of the season in the first period, giving the rookie four points (2g/2a) in his last four games. Cody McLeod also scored tonight, giving him five points (3g/2a) in his last five outings.
-Colorado is now 10-4-0 in its last 14 games at Pepsi Center and has six contests remaining on its season-long eight-game homestand.
-Smyth ranks first on Colorado’s scoring chart with 36 points (16g/20a).
-Tonight marked the Avs’ first win over the Flames this season in five tries.
Fans in attendance saw a double dose of milestones, as both Ryan Smyth and Milan Hejduk notched their 300th career NHL goal in the second period of Colorado’s 6-2 victory over the Calgary Flames.
Smyth got there shortly before his linemate.
With the Avalanche short-handed, Smyth was joined by Ben Guite on a 2-on-1 rush toward the Calgary goal. After streaking up the right wing, the Banff, Alberta, native elected to take the shot himself, putting a wrister on net that handcuffed Calgary netminder Curtis McElhinney. The milestone goal came at 13:00 of the middle stanza and gave the Avalanche a 3-1 advantage.
It was the sixth short-handed tally of Smyth’s 14-year career.
Hejduk joined Smyth in the 300-goal club just a few minutes later when he snapped off a quick wrist shot from the left faceoff circle with the Avalanche on a power play. Assists went to John-Michael Liles and Brett Clark on the tally, which came at 17:44.
It marked only the second time in NHL history that a pair of teammates both scored their 300th career NHL goal in the same game. Detroit’s Danny Gare and Ivan Boldirev previously accomplished the feat on Feb. 26, 1983 against the New York Islanders at Joe Louis Arena.
Amazingly, Gare and Boldirev also notched their 300th goals in the second period (and back-to-back, just like Hejduk and Smyth). In that game nearly 16 years ago, Gare tallied his milestone marker just 48 seconds into the middle frame, while Boldirev scored his at the 1:39 mark.
Hejduk also became the fourth player in Avalanche/Nordiques history to reach 300 goals, joining Joe Sakic (625), Michel Goulet (456) and Peter Stastny (380). Smyth, meanwhile, has tallied 30 goals with Colorado, five with the New York Islanders and 265 with the Edmonton Oilers.
The last set of teammates to each notch their 300th goal in the same season was Bobby Holik and Slava Kozlov with the Atlanta Thrashers in 2006-07.
Jack Of All Trades
In addition to increasing his offensive output recently, Wojtek Wolski has also displayed his versatility in the past few weeks. Tonight he took up one of the point positions on Colorado’s top power-play unit, with John-Michael Liles on the other side. Wolski has been used at the point on occasion in the past, but hadn’t seen action there of late. The left wing, who has converted to center recently, picked up an assist on Marek Svatos’ power-play marker in the opening frame.
A Safe Bet
Coming into the game, it would have been pretty safe to assume that the team leading after two periods would eventually come out on top. The Avalanche came into tonight’s contest with a 15-0-0 record when leading after 40 minutes, while the Flames held a 15-0-2 mark in the same situation.
The Avs led 4-1 after two periods and held up the trend with a 6-2 victory. Colorado has now won its last 24 games when carrying a lead into the third period, the longest active streak in the NHL.
Forward Chris Durno made his NHL debut tonight after being recalled earlier in the day from the Lake Erie Monsters of the American Hockey League. He became the third player to make his NHL debut with the Avs this season (Philippe Dupuis and Chris Stewart are the others).
The Michigan Tech alum skated at left wing on a line with Ben Guite and Brian Willsie and totaled 7:42 of ice time in 10 shifts.