NHL Game Summary - Colorado at Philadelphia
(Tuesday, December 16th)
Final Score: Philadelphia 5, Colorado 2
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Simon Gagne and Mike Richards recorded a goal and two assists each as Philadelphia topped Colorado, 5-2, at the Wachovia Center.
Mike Knuble, Jeff Carter and Joffrey Lupul also tallied for the Flyers, who have won five games in a row.
Antero Niittymaki, in place of the flu-ridden Martin Biron, made 29 saves for the win and improved to 6-1-2 on the season.
"We've had some good bounces lately," said Flyers head coach John Stevens. "If you go back a little bit to the beginning of the year, I thought the first six games we had some unfortunate bounces. It just seems like the harder you work the bounces turn in your direction."
Paul Stastny and David Jones scored for the Avalanche, who have dropped two of three. Peter Budaj allowed five goals on 24 shots in defeat.
Colorado got on the board 9:23 into the contest while on the power play. Stastny won a right-circle draw forward to the boards. Two players overskated the puck as it caromed back into the slot, and Stastny picked it up and tucked it home.
Knuble then tied the game on the man advantage with 8:23 to play in the first, redirecting a Richards feed from the top of the crease. Carter completed a 2- on-1 with Gagne for a short-handed goal with 1:48 remaining in the period.
Lupul's wrister from the right circle found its way through a screen for a 3-1 Flyers lead with 8:36 left in the second.
One minute, 18 seconds later, Richards was credited with his 13th goal of the season. He took a shot from 25 feet out that was deflected in front, bounced off the top of the boards, the top of the net and down Budaj's back before crossing the goal line.
"He does a lot of things right out there, so I guess you get those types of bounces when you have the puck all game and you're shooting," Lupul said of Richards' lucky bounces on the score.
Philly wasted a late 5-on-3 power play and saw Colorado climb within 4-2 on its following advantage as Jones redirected a T.J. Hensick shot out of midair with 1:21 left in the period.
Kimmo Timonen's power-play blast from the point was tipped home by Gagne 2:14 into the third and gave the Flyers a 5-2 edge, and the home team clamped down from there to post the victory.
"It wasn't really a 5-2 game," said Avs head coach Tony Granato. "I thought we did a lot of things we wanted to especially early in the game, but they found a way to hang on there. The goalie made some saves when he had to. We tried. We ran out of gas a little bit towards the end, but they've won a lot of games lately for a reason."
Philly had not beaten Colorado since a 2-1 overtime win in Denver on December 27, 2002, and had not bested the Avs at home since a 5-4 overtime decision on October 28, 1999...Knuble's tally was his 100th as a Flyer...Carter's tally was the club's 12th shorthanded goal...Lupul's score gave him 10 on the season, the sixth Flyer to do so this season...Timonen picked up two assists, giving him six in the last two games...Richards extended his point streak to eight games...Budaj has given up four or more goals in three of his last four starts. It was also the sixth time this year that he has surrendered five or more goals.
12/16 22:35:12 ET