Winnipeg was no match for the top ranked Colorado Avalanche last night, falling 5-2 to the Stanley Cup favorites and being dominated in most every facet of the game to earn their seventh straight win.
Colorado fired 48 shots on net last night including 26 in the second period which matched the total Winnipeg put up in the whole game. That stat alone tells the story of much of this game. Clorado came out early and controlled the play. The Avalanche got their first just 3 and a half minutes into the game when Claude Lemieux finished a pretty passing play which left Nikolai Khabibulin out of position and with no chance to make the save. Winnipeg was fortanate to keep that depecit at 1-0 for most of the period as if not for many spectacular saves by Khabibulin and some over passing by Colorado this game could easily have gotten out of hand early. Winnipeg did manage to knot up the game before the end of the period when Alexei Zhamnov got his 3rd in the last two games and sent the home team to their dressing room with a little hope.
Coming out for the second period Colorado took any chance the home crowd felt they may have and threw it out of the building scoring just 14 seconds in as Martin Rucinsky took the puck from the face off broke into the Jets zone and lasered a shot over Khabibulins shoulder. Winnipeg managed to hold the over powering Avs to just two other goals despite their 26 shots, coming off the sticks of Valeri Kamensky, and a second from Claude Lemieux.
The third period was largely uneventful as the games outcome seemed decided. Winnipeg did score a goal 5 minutes in to make the score seem a lot closer than the game. Kris King fnished of a cross crease pass by Teemu Selanne for an easy tap in, but that was all the Jets could muster. Winnipeg in a last ditch effort did pull their goaltender, but that only resulted in another Avalanche goal as Peter Forsberg found the empty cage for the goal to go with his 3 assists. Nikolai Khabibulin took his second straight loss although playing miraculously for Winnipeg, making 43 saves and keeping the game from getting out of hand. Stephane Fiset got the win for Colorado, his 6th straigh and seventh overall.
Winnipegs next action comes November 5th in Buffalo.
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