Forsberg notched a goal and an assist and Selanne scored his
first goal in a Colorado uniform as the Avalanche beat the
Minnesota Wild 5-2 on Thursday night.
"I think they will do this to a lot of teams in this league,"
Minnesota coach Jacques Lemaire said after the Avs recorded their
second five-goal game of the season. They beat Chicago 5-0 in their
Forsberg scored the first of three second-period goals for
Colorado, which beat the Wild for the 12th time in 16
regular-season games. John-Michael Liles and Milan Hejduk also
scored in the second for the Avalanche.
"It was good to see production from different guys," Forsberg
It was the first meeting between the teams since the first round
of last year's playoffs, where the upstart Wild eliminated the Avs
in seven games.
A lot has changed since then.
Patrick Roy is gone and Colorado has juiced up its lineup with
Selanne and Paul Kariya. The Wild, meanwhile, are still missing
their top two goal scorers from last season -- holdouts Marian
Gaborik and Pascal Dupuis.
Their absence is noticeable.
The Wild entered the game 0-for-12 on the power play. They had a
chance to pull within a goal with eight minutes left in the game
when Bates Battaglia was sent to the penalty box for hooking.
But Minnesota looked out-of-sync against Colorado's smooth
penalty kill, and throughout the game for that matter.
"They seemed to be a little tight and we had room to move,"
Selanne sent the fans to the exits at the 16:28 mark when he
intercepted a pass at the blue line and beat a sprawled Manny
Fernandez, who made 26 saves.
Minnesota broke its power-play drought at 3:52 of the second
period when Alexandre Daigle scored his second goal of the season
to make it 1-all.
"Well, we got one," Lemaire said with a laugh. "Some
But the Avs regained the lead 38 seconds later when Forsberg
picked up Alex Tanguay's rebound and beat Fernandez's glove to put
Colorado up 2-1.
"That goal broke the game open," Forsberg said.
"Our line had a pretty good shift and we scored and then Liles
made it 3-1. That was the game right there. When you get up by two
goals, you're not going to lose too many games."
Liles tipped a shot past Fernandez in front of the net at 6:52
of the second for his first career goal. And Hejduk made it 4-1 on
a late power play -- Colorado's only power play of the game.
From behind the net, Forsberg zipped the puck to Hejduk, who
wristed it from the left side of the net behind Fernandez, drawing
a groan from the crowd.
The Wild pulled to 4-2 on Darby Hendrickson's first goal of the
season in the third. Hendrickson picked up a loose puck in front of
the net and got the shot off as he fell to his knees, beating
Aebsicher's stick side at 6:06.
But Selanne's goal deflated any hopes for a comeback.
It took 14 games for Minnesota to lose its third game last
year. ... Kariya turned 29 on Thursday. ... Nikolishin, who played
with Chicago last season, also scored his first goal as a member of
the Avalanche. ... Wild RW Richard Park missed his fourth straight
game with an injured right knee. ... Colorado D Martin Skoula
missed his second straight game with a bruised foot. ... The Wild
unveiled their third jersey -- a red throwback with a circular logo
on the chest.