NHL Game Summary - Colorado at Toronto
(Saturday, March 20th)
Final Score: Toronto 5, Colorado 2
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Owen Nolan scored twice and Ed Belfour made 32 saves to lead Toronto to a 5-2 win over Colorado at the Air Canada Centre.
Robert Reichel, Nik Antropov and Mats Sundin also scored for the Maple Leafs, who won for the third time in four games. They moved one-point ahead of Ottawa for second place in the Northeast Division, but remain one point behind Boston.
Joe Sakic finished with a goal and an assist for the Avalanche, who suffered their third straight loss. They lead the Northwest Division by four points over second-place Vancouver. John-Michael Liles scored and David Aebischer stopped 19 shots.
The Maple Leafs went ahead 3-0 in the first period.
Nolan opened the scoring at 7:43 with a wrist shot from between the circles. Less than a minute later, Reichel earned his 10th of the season off a rebound in the slot on a backhand.
Antropov beat Aebischer with a wrist shot near the left circle with 9:45 to go in the period.
However, Belfour was forced to make 12 saves for Toronto, which was outshot 12-7 in the first period.
Colorado used a pair of goals on the power play to get within 3-2.
Liles made it 3-1 with 7:55 left in the second. A match penalty and a game misconduct call against Wade Belak led to the goal. Liles converted a rebound from the right circle off a shot by Joe Sakic.
"That has got to stop," Selanne said of the penalty that cost his team a goal. "I think every team has to have a meeting and talk about this stuff because we can't let this happen, The guys are so strong these days. I know the intensity level is high every game, and the coaches tell us to play hard and finish your checks, be tough, but there is a line between stupidity and playing hard."
Sakic got his 32nd of the season 3:16 later with the Avalanche on a two-man advantage. He beat Belfour with a wrist shot from the right circle.
Toronto used a late rush in the period to go ahead 4-2. Sundin posted his 30th of the season with a low shot from just below the left circle with 10 seconds left.
Colorado dominated play, holding a 14-5 shot edge in the middle period.
With 3:59 left in the third period, an apparent goal by Adam Foote on a slap shot from above the right circle was waived off by a goaltender interference call against Avalanche center Riku Hahl.
About two minutes later, Belfour made a diving save to help preserve the victory for Toronto. Then, with 22 seconds to go, Nolan capped the scoring with an empty-net goal.
Sundin reached 30 goals for the 11th season in his career for Toronto, which improved to 4-1-1 in its last six in the series...The Avalanche finished 2- for-8 on the power play...Belfour earned at least 30 wins for the ninth time in his career...Ron Francis registered an assist giving him 74 career helpers against the Quebec/Colorado franchise.
03/20 23:49:21 ET