Sakic Steps Up

Archived from 2000-01 season.

2001 Playoffs

Colorado vs. St. Louis

Joe Sakic scored twice, including the game-winner on a penalty shot, and Patrick Roy was solid in the net as the Colorado Avalanche beat the St. Louis Blues 4-1 in the Western Conference finals opener.

Two days earlier Peter Forsberg's season ended with a surgery to remove a ruptured spleen, but the Avalanche responded with a superb performance.

"It's pretty tough to play without Forsberg," Colorado coach Bob Hartley said. "You can't call up anyone from the minors and asking him to replace Peter Forsberg. We can turn around and trust 23 athletes that we have in our dressing room."

The turning point of the game came in the second period when the Avs were awarded a penalty shot after Blues goalie Roman Turek illegally threw his stick at the puck.

Sakic, who missed two games in the Conference semifinals with a sore shoulder, skated in on Turek and shot the puck in off the right post.

"You just want to make sure you try and score and not embarrass yourself out there," Sakic said. "It's just you and the goalie, so you don't want to fumble the puck, that's for sure."

"That was a pretty good shot, off the post," Turek said. "Sakic is a very good player. Sakic didn't seem like his shoulder was bothering him."

Sakic totaled two goals and two assists and Milan Hejduk also scored twice for Colorado.

"We did everything we possibly could wrong," St. Louis forward Keith Tkachuk said. "I hope to say we can't get any worse."

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