Chicago
Blackhawks
44-29-9
Colorado
Avalanche
30-44-8
OT
38 SOG
41 SOG
1st2nd3rdOTT
CHI
COL
  • Preview
  • Watch
  • Ice Tracker
  • Boxscore
  • Recap
  • photos (28)
game recap

Avalanche 4, Blackhawks 3, OT

Tuesday, 06.19.2012 / 12:38 AM

Associated Press

Share with your Friends


Avalanche 4, Blackhawks 3, OT
Chicago Blackhawks 3, Colorado Avalanche 4

DENVER (AP) - Paul Stastny patterned his game, in part, after Peter Forsberg and Joe Sakic.

Matt Duchene had posters of Patrick Roy plastered all over his bedroom wall.

With their boyhood heroes in the house, Duchene and Stastny put on quite a season-opening show.

Stastny scored two goals, including the game-winner 3:40 into overtime, and Duchene added another to lift the Colorado Avalanche to a 4-3 victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night.

Duchene and Stastny staged a performance that even had Roy raving. The Hall of Fame goalie was on hand as the Avalanche honored their 1996 Cup-winning team in a pregame ceremony.

"Great game," Roy said. "Really entertaining. It was a great night for us, for sure."

Stastny's winning goal from in front was set up by a pass out of the corner by Duchene. Blackhawks goalie Marty Turco got a piece of the puck, but it trickled into the net.

"I just tried to shoot it quick," Stastny said. "If it goes in, it goes in. If not, 'Dutchy' is there."

Duchene - or "Dutchy" to his friends - was there all night. He also scored when he deflected a pass from Adam Foote into the net in the second period.

To him, the most rewarding part was that Sakic, Roy and Forsberg were there watching. He had posters of all three growing up and secretly wanted to become a goalie, following in Roy's path.

But he became a forward, instead, leading NHL rookies in points last season.

"Some of those guys were like gods for me growing up," Duchene said. "They were my idols. It was great meeting them and talking to them."

And leaving an impact.

"He's only 19 years old, but he's handling the puck really well and competes well," Roy said of Duchene.

Patrick Sharp tied the game midway through the third period for Chicago. Bryan Bickell and Marian Hossa also scored for the Blackhawks, who have dropped five of their last six season openers.

The Blackhawks have a decidedly different look this season after severing ties with playoff standout Dustin Byfuglien and Cup-winning goalie Antti Niemi as part of moves to get under the salary cap.

Still, their youthful and skillful core remains in tact, making the team strong title contenders again. Sharp and Jonathan Toews, two of those tenacious 20-somethings, each had an assist.

To replace Niemi, Chicago brought in veteran goalie Turco. He was shaky in the second period, giving up two goals, including a power-play tally by Stastny that trickled through his pads.

But he came up big in the third, especially in the closing seconds. Turco landed on a loose puck as Colorado players collapsed around him, smothering it with his back while his legs were in the net.

Turco stopped 37 shots.

"Played very well. Made several key saves - none bigger than the one in the dying minute of the game," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "He was big. A lot of high-quality chances in the game, more than we'd like to give up."

Craig Anderson was solid for the Avalanche, stopping a flurry of shots late in regulation and finishing with 35 saves. The team relied heavily on him last season as he set franchise marks in games played, minutes, shots faced and saves.

While the Blackhawks launched their title defense Thursday, the Avalanche looked back. There were 24 players and coaches in attendance for the reunion, including Sakic, Roy and Forsberg.

The Avalanche swept the Florida Panthers in the finals that year, giving the state of Colorado its first major pro sports title in the team's first season in the Mile High City after relocating from Quebec.

The '96 squad gathered on the ice, shaking hands as they made their way along the red carpet.

Foote skated out to meet his former teammates and posed for a few photos. Then, he glided over to his current crew, donning that model of the Avalanche sweater on top of his '96 uniform.

Entering his 19th season, Foote is the lone player from that squad still playing for Colorado.

"It goes so fast," Foote said.

The Avalanche crew had a chance to mingle and reflect at a celebratory dinner on Wednesday. Quenneville, who was an Avalanche assistant coach back then, was in attendance.

"It's fun to get a chance to see everyone again and kind of reminisce about the old times, especially us old, retired guys," Sakic said.

Notes: Quenneville coached his 1,000th NHL game Thursday. ... Avalanche F Peter Mueller (concussion) is out indefinitely. ... Chicago's D Nick Leddy and Colorado F Mark Olver made their NHL debut Thursday.

scoring summary
1st Period
04:37
CHI
PPG - Bryan Bickell (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Marian Hossa (1), Troy Brouwer (1)
1 - 0 CHI
16:30
COL
Chris Stewart (1) Wrist shot - ASST: NONE
1 - 1 Tie
2nd Period
06:13
COL
Matt Duchene (1) Tip-in - ASST: Adam Foote (1), Kyle Cumiskey (1)
2 - 1 COL
13:51
COL
PPG - Paul Stastny (1) Snap shot - ASST: John-Michael Liles (1), Chris Stewart (1)
3 - 1 COL
18:24
CHI
Marian Hossa (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Patrick Sharp (1), Tomas Kopecky (1)
3 - 2 COL
3rd Period
10:25
CHI
PPG - Patrick Sharp (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Tomas Kopecky (2), Jonathan Toews (1)
3 - 3 Tie
OT Period
03:40
COL
Paul Stastny (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Matt Duchene (1), John-Michael Liles (2)
4 - 3 COL
penalty summary
1st Period
03:36
COL
Mark Olver  Tripping against  Jonathan Toews
08:22
COL
Kyle Quincey  Interference against  Bryan Bickell
14:06
COL
Adam Foote  Interference against  Fernando Pisani
2nd Period
03:45
COL
Matt Duchene  Hooking against  Niklas Hjalmarsson
06:30
CHI
Jack Skille  Hooking against  Matt Duchene
11:29
COL
Daniel Winnik  Boarding against  Jordan Hendry
13:45
CHI
Brent Seabrook  Tripping against  TJ Galiardi
14:05
CHI
John Scott  Hi-sticking against  Matt Duchene
3rd Period
02:54
COL
Matt Duchene  Tripping against  Viktor Stalberg
10:08
COL
Kyle Cumiskey  Holding against  Jake Dowell
OT Period
NONE
goalie stats
Marty Turco
SA: 41TOI: 63:29
Saves: 37EV: 31 - 34
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 6
SV%: .902SH: 1 - 1
Craig Anderson
SA: 38TOI: 63:30
Saves: 35EV: 26 - 27
PIM: 0PP: 8 - 10
SV%: .921SH: 1 - 1