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Dwayne Roloson makes 39 saves as Oilers defeat Avalanche 4-3

"I didn't know it was my 100th win, not until they gave me the puck at the end of the game," Roloson said after leading Edmonton past Colorado 4-3 Saturday night.

"It meant more to get the win than the puck."

Petr Sykora and Ryan Smyth provided the offence, each scoring twice.

Just 20 seconds into the third period, Smyth, who has scored five goals in his last two games, deflected Jason Smith's shot from the right point past Jose Theodore, breaking a 2-2 tie. Less than four minutes later, Sykora's wrist shot from the slot dribbled between Theodore's pads.

Colorado pulled to 4-3 when Milan Hejduk poked a pass from Paul Stastny past Roloson on a break at 11:50. The Avs pulled Theodore with 75 seconds left, but Roloson didn't buckle.

"I just kept adding up the shots," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. "Roloson held up long enough with solid goaltending and we were fortunate enough to get the offence.

"I can't remember us getting many ugly wins like this while I've been coaching here," MacTavish added. "When you get an ugly win it's because of good goaltending. We got good goaltending tonight."

The Avs hadn't played in six days, a layoff longer than the all-star break in January, and they showed some rust at times but coach Joel Quenneville took solace in offensive opportunities that they generated.

"We've got a lot of guys that can make plays and we expect to have the puck, and our puck-control and puck-possession game should get rewarded eventually," Quenneville said. "We haven't had the production that we'd like right now, but certainly I think the quality and quantity that we had, most nights we'll find a way to be on the right side of the scoreboard."

Colorado was the last NHL team to allow a power-play goal. After killing 15 penalties, including three Saturday night, the Avs finally succumbed when Smyth tied it 2-2 at 17:14 of the second period.

Colorado defenceman Ken Klee left Smyth unattended on the opposite side of the crease, and Shawn Horcoff found him with a pass while Avs defenceman Karlis Skrastins was in the penalty box after flipping the puck into the seats.

Smyth has scored five goals and six points in two games. His fifth career hat trick Thursday night led Edmonton past San Jose 6-4.

"A lot of them are lucky goals and little flukes here and there," Smyth said. "But at the end of the day we're getting wins."

The Avs took a 2-1 lead earlier in the second period when Tyler Arnason took the puck off the short boards and wove his way to the left circle, where he flipped a wrist shot over Roloson's right shoulder. It was Arnason's first goal since Feb. 11 against Los Angeles, ending a 27-game drought.

Avs rookie Wojtek Wolski scored his third goal of the season when he sent the puck past Roloson from the slot after Klee's shot from the right point at 8:07 of the first period.

Thirty-nine seconds later, the Oilers tied it 1-1 when Sykora deflected Daniel Tjarnqvist's slap shot past Theodore.

Even though they have just one win to show for their abundance of scoring chances, the Avs feel good about having gotten more than 30 shots on goal in each of their first four games.

"Sooner or later they're going to go in," captain Joe Sakic said. "In bunches."

Notes: The game was delayed for more than 10 minutes in the third period when the glass broke near the Avalanche goal. ... Avs D Jordan Leopold, who had a hernia operation in August, wasn't able to finish practice Friday, putting his plan to return to action next week in question.



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