Final

Series (Game 1 of 8)

Colorado leads 5-3

Game 1: Thursday, December 22nd
Wild3Final
Avalanche4
Game 2: Friday, December 23rd
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Wild5
Game 3: Thursday, January 5th
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Wild2
Game 4: Tuesday, January 31st
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Avalanche3
Game 5: Thursday, February 9th
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Wild1
Game 6: Tuesday, February 28th
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Avalanche4
Game 7: Sunday, March 5th
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Game 8: Sunday, April 9th
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Wild 3

(14-16-4, 32 pts)

Avalanche 4

(18-14-3, 39 pts)

9:00 PM ET, December 22, 2005

Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado

1 2 3 T
MIN 2 1 03
COL 3 0 14

P. Budaj (Avalanche - G): Saves: 27, Save Pct.: .900

A. Zyuzin (Wild - D): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

A. Laaksonen (Avalanche - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

Minnesota (14-15-4) at Colorado (17-14-3) 9:00 pm EST

Minnesota (14-15-4) at Colorado (17-14-3) 9:00 pm EST

DENVER (Ticker) -- Jacque Lemaire's defensive preachings certainly are sinking in for the Minnesota Wild.

The Wild aim for their fourth win in five games Thursday when they visit the Colorado Avalanche in the front end of a home-and-home series.

Lemaire, who led the New Jersey Devils to the Stanley Cup title in 1995, continues to get results out of his famed defensive trap. Minnesota has allowed only 78 goals - the third-lowest total in the league - and has turned up its defense an extra notch of late.

The Wild have surrendered three goals or fewer in 12 straight games and have not yielded more than four in a game since a 5-3 loss to Vancouver on October 14.

Minnesota is coming off a 2-1 triumph vs. Dallas on Monday behind 30 saves by Manny Fernandez and third-period goals by Todd White and Marian Gaborik.

Colorado, on the other hand, has dropped four of its last five games following a run of five wins in seven games.

The Avalanche are coming off Tuesday's 3-2 setback in Nashville despite goals from Pierre Turgeon and defenseman John-Michael Liles.

Colorado is 8-1-2 all-time against Minnesota, including a 1-1-1 mark in the 2003-04 season series.

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