Colorado Avalanche Logo and Header
Calgary
Flames
46-25-11
Colorado
Avalanche
43-30-9

33 SOG
41 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
CGY
COL
game recap

Calgary Flames 3, Colorado Avalanche 7 FINAL

Tuesday, 06.19.2012 / 12:27 AM

Associated Press

DENVER (AP) - Few teams need to find new guys to come through big as badly as the revamped Colorado Avalanche. Few players wanted to do it worse than Marek Svatos.

Svatos made hockey's return to Denver a jubilant one Monday night, finishing with a hat trick to lead the Avalanche to a 7-3 victory over the struggling Calgary Flames.

``There's no better feeling in the world,'' Svatos said.

Especially considering his recent past.

While all players missed the game during the 16-month break brought about by NHL labor strife, Svatos got hit with a double whammy, having missed most of the previous season with an injured shoulder.

``There's no feeling worse than not being able to play the game you love,'' he said.

He played it well in Colorado's home opener and when his third goal went in, Avalanche fans partook in one of the great traditions in sports - showering the ice with hats.

It was quite a fine return for the Avs, who were largely considered losers in all the comings and goings brought about by the new collective bargaining agreement.

They played in front of their 441st straight sellout crowd in Denver, one of the handful of American markets where concerns over fan support after the lockout wasn't quite as big a deal.

And they put on a good show.

``It was one of those nights where the puck went in for us,'' Avalanche coach Joel Quenneville said. ``We had an edge coming into it.''

Indeed, they did against the Flames, who went 1-3 on their season-opening road trip and got outscored 13-6 by Colorado and Detroit on back-to-back nights.

``This sounds like a broken record. We are being totally dominated,'' Flames coach Darryl Sutter said.

The 2004 Stanley Cup runners-up were thought to be winners over the layoff, bringing in Tony Amonte and Darren McCarty - among others - and signing star forward Jarome Iginla to a new, three-year contract.

Iginla had an assist on Calgary's second goal to give him three points for the season. McCarty, an old nemesis of the Avs from his days with Detroit, got a game misconduct for slamming Pierre Turgeon to the boards at the end of the second period.

Overall, the Flames looked tired and sloppy, and were undoubtedly happy to be heading home for their opener in Calgary on Thursday against Dallas.

``It isn't one thing,'' Iginla said. ``Look at all aspects of our game. It all needs to improve.''

The Avalanche, meanwhile, had a much different story to tell and there were more strong efforts by the newcomers to celebrate.

Rookie Wojtek Wolski, Colorado's first-round draft pick in 2004, scored his first NHL goal in the first period, taking a nice pass from John-Michael Liles and dropping it past Miikka Kiprusoff. Wolski had an assist later in the period on a wraparound goal by Brett McClean, another new face.

Patrice Brisebois had a goal for Colorado and Turgeon had an assist. Those two were signed as the ostensible replacements for Peter Forsberg and Adam Foote, neither of whom the Avalanche could afford to keep under the NHL's new system.

David Aebischer made 30 saves to get the win. He lost the shutout late in the second period when Dion Phaneuf flipped the puck in from the blue line and past the screened-out goalie.

Meanwhile, Svatos showed the promise the Avalanche saw in him when he was one of four rookies to make the opening-night roster in 2003.

``He's one of those guys who has a quick stick, a hot stick,'' Quenneville said. ``It was a special night for him.''

Calgary's second goal came shorthanded by Amonte, and was held up after a lengthy review determined the net had not been kicked off the mooring before the puck crossed the line. Amonte scored again on a power play to make it 7-3 - a cheap consolation prize to end a bad road trip.

``Why panic now?'' Amonte said. ``We've been gripping it tight. We haven't found ourselves yet.''

Notes: The Avalanche improved to 5-0-1 in home openers at the Pepsi Center. ... The Flames have killed only 14 of 25 power plays in their first four games. ... Kirpusoff's goals-against average climbed to 4.93.

scoring summary
1st Period
04:02
COL
PPG - Wojtek Wolski (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Marek Svatos (1), John-Michael Liles (2)
1 - 0 COL
16:10
COL
Brett McLean (1) Wrap-around - ASST: Wojtek Wolski (1), Ossi Vaananen (1)
2 - 0 COL
2nd Period
01:47
COL
Marek Svatos (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Ian Laperriere (2), Antti Laaksonen (1)
3 - 0 COL
16:09
COL
Marek Svatos (3) Backhand shot - ASST: Pierre Turgeon (3), Rob Blake (2)
4 - 0 COL
16:45
COL
Antti Laaksonen (2) Backhand shot - ASST: Kurt Sauer (1)
5 - 0 COL
17:35
CGY
Dion Phaneuf (1) Slapshot - ASST: Stephane Yelle (2), Darren McCarty (1)
5 - 1 COL
18:54
COL
PPG - Patrice Brisebois (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Alex Tanguay (2), Joe Sakic (2)
6 - 1 COL
3rd Period
03:36
CGY
SHG - Tony Amonte (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Jarome Iginla (2)
6 - 2 COL
09:34
COL
PPG - Marek Svatos (4) Wrist shot - ASST: Wojtek Wolski (2), John-Michael Liles (3)
7 - 2 COL
11:37
CGY
PPG - Tony Amonte (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Dion Phaneuf (1), Roman Hamrlik (3)
7 - 3 COL
penalty summary
1st Period
02:39
CGY
Byron Ritchie  Hooking
09:50
COL
Rob Blake  Holding the stick against  Stephane Yelle
17:38
COL
Kurt Sauer  Tripping against  Eric Nystrom
2nd Period
02:10
CGY
Shean Donovan  Holding
05:00
COL
Ossi Vaananen  Interference against  Chuck Kobasew
05:22
CGY
Stephane Yelle  Interference against  Steve Konowalchuk
12:06
COL
David Aebischer  Interference against  Byron Ritchie
18:13
CGY
Steve Montador  Hooking against  Steve Konowalchuk
19:52
CGY
Chuck Kobasew  Tripping against  Ossi Vaananen
20:00
CGY
Darren McCarty  Game misconduct
20:00
CGY
Darren McCarty  Boarding (maj) against  Patrice Brisebois
3rd Period
05:37
CGY
Roman Hamrlik  Holding against  Steve Konowalchuk
05:37
COL
Steve Konowalchuk  Holding
09:01
CGY
Chris Simon  Boarding against  Alex Tanguay
09:55
COL
Kurt Sauer  Holding
11:02
COL
Patrice Brisebois  Holding against  Shean Donovan
11:58
CGY
Shean Donovan  Interference against  Antti Laaksonen
16:22
COL
Kurt Sauer  Holding against  Jarome Iginla
goalie stats
Miikka Kiprusoff
Miikka Kiprusoff
SA: 41TOI: 59:54
Saves: 34EV: 19 - 23
PIM: 0PP: 13 - 16
SV%: .829SH: 2 - 2
David Aebischer
SA: 33TOI: 59:53
Saves: 30EV: 23 - 24
PIM: 2PP: 7 - 8
SV%: .909SH: 0 - 1
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