Final

Series (Game 1 of 1)

Buffalo leads 1-0

Game 1: Sunday, October 26th
Sabres3Final
Avalanche1

Sabres 3

(5-4-0, 10 pts)

Avalanche 1

(4-4-0, 8 pts)

9:00 PM ET, October 26, 2003

Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado

1 2 3 T
BUF 0 1 23
COL 0 1 01

C. Drury (Sabres - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

M. Biron (Sabres - G): Saves: 32, Save Pct.: .970

P. Forsberg (Avalanche - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 1

Colorado's peak: Forsberg's 700th point

DENVER (AP) -- Chris Drury was known for scoring clutch goals in his four seasons with Colorado. He did it to his former teammates this time.

Drury scored with 2:29 left and Martin Biron stopped 32 shots as the Buffalo Sabres beat the Avalanche 3-1 Sunday night.

Drury skated in alone across the blue line after J.P. Dumont squeezed a puck along the boards, then beat Phil Sauve to the glove side from the right circle for his second goal this season.

"He got another big one, scoring the game winner," Colorado's Milan Hejduk said. "It's just the way it goes."

A solid player in the regular season with the Avalanche, Drury always seemed to pick up a head of steam once the playoffs started. He had 85 goals in 253 regular-season games, but is still fourth on Colorado's franchise list with 26 in 80 playoff games.

But even with his 11 playoff game winners, the Avalanche traded him to Calgary before last season in a five-player deal that sent defenseman Derek Morris to Colorado. Drury had 23 goals and 30 assists with the Flames but was traded Buffalo before this season.

It has been a perfect fit.

Drury has given the rebuilt Sabres some needed scoring punch, leading the team with nine points and a career-high seven-game points streak.

"We targeted him as a guy that scores big goals in clutch situations," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "That was a big goal for us in this road trip."

Dumont added an empty-net goal with 58 seconds left, his second, to push Buffalo over .500 (5-4) for the first time this season. The Sabres have won three straight and finished a franchise-long six-game road trip 4-2.

"This is a heck of a trip for us," Drury said.

Colorado had a two-man advantage for 1:05 early in the third period, but couldn't get past Biron. He made three tough saves in traffic, and Joe Sakic hit the crossbar on another shot.

Biron also toppled over like a domino midway through the third after squeezing a shot by Alex Tanguay between his pads, then blocked another from close range by Hejduk on a power play.

Dan Hinote hit the right post with five minutes left at the end of the power play.

"If you don't score on a five-on-three, it always seems to find a way to come back," Colorado coach Tony Granato said. "And that's what happened again tonight."

Buffalo's Ales Kotalik opened the scoring two minutes into the second period, redirecting Rory Fitzpatrick's shot from the left circle past Sauve on a power play for his third of the season.

Tanguay tied it with five minutes left in the period, lifting a shot just under the bar on a power play. Peter Forsberg set up Tanguay's third of the year by slipping a pass behind two defensemen after Hejduk skated past.

It was the 700th career point for Forsberg, who stood up from the bench, smiled and raised his stick to acknowledge a standing ovation from the crowd.

The line of Forsberg, Tanguay and Hejduk has 21 points in three games, including three Sunday. Tanguay has a six-game points streak with three goals and seven assists, and Forsberg has seven points in three games.

"We are struggling right now to put the puck in the net," Sakic said. "We can't just rely on Peter's line. The rest of us have to find a way to put the puck in the net."

Game notes


Colorado recalled LW Travis Brigley from Hershey before the game. ... Buffalo has scored power-play goals in seven straight games. ... Colorado LW Brad Larsen didn't play the final two periods because of a groin injury. ... Colorado killed off 16 straight penalties before Kotalik's goal in the second period. ... Miroslav Satan needs one goal to become the 10th Buffalo player to reach 200.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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