DENVER -- Maxime Talbot was simply looking to help kill a penalty. Axel Witsel Jersey
. That he scored a short-handed goal in the process, well, the Colorado Avalanche certainly wont argue. Talbot broke a second-period tie, and Semyon Varlamov stopped 27 shots to lead the Avalanche to a 4-2 win over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night. "Every time you get a goal on a PK its always huge," said Talbot, who has scored 16 short-handed goals. Tyson Barrie, Ryan OReilly and Matt Duchene also scored for the Avalanche, who bounced back from an 8-2 loss to the Oilers two weeks ago in Edmonton. That lopsided loss was on their mind. "We knew what happened last time when we played there. We came ready," Talbot said. Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had goals for the Oilers, who finished their road swing 0-4 and were outscored 14-4. They also were without Sam Gagner after he was ejected in the first period when he knocked down Paul Stastny with a stick to the face. That was a sensitive subject after the game. Oilers coach Dallas Eakins really didnt think Gagner did anything that warranted an ejection. "I thought it was by accident when that stick came up," Eakins said. "I thought you could see it immediately, when the guy went down, Gags was concerned. When you mean to do it, you skate away with a smirk on your face. "All I was looking for from the official was the explanation. ... Suddenly, everything changed after the Jumbotron showed it." Edmonton pulled goalie Devan Dubnyk for an extra skater with 1:53 remaining, but couldnt score the equalizer. Duchene added an empty-net goal with 1.1 seconds remaining. He also had two assists. Talbot scored the winner with 1:32 remaining in the second period with the Oilers on the power play. Edmonton turned over the puck, Marc-Andre Cliche carried it up the ice, and then fed it to Talbot, who slid a backhanded shot past Dubnyk. "The short-handed goal, its frustrating," Eakins said. "Youve been waiting the whole game for a power play. The power play not only goes out and gives them a 2-on-1, the next unit goes out and gives them a breakaway. The whole bench is shaking their head. Its disgusting." Varlamov made it hold up throughout the third period, and in the process vanquished some demons against Edmonton after being rocked for eight goals on Dec. 5 at Rexall Place. "Oh yeah. It was a nightmare, especially for me," Varlamov said of his last encounter with the Oilers. Edmonton took a 2-1 lead at 12:10 of the second period when Nugent-Hopkins sent a wrist shot past Varlamov. It didnt last long as OReilly tied it by tapping in a pass from rookie Nathan MacKinnon. Duchene also had an assist on the play, his second of the night. He has 10 points (four goals, six assists) in five games. Asked before the game about his recent scoring spree, Duchene shrugged and said, "I just got back to doing what I was doing before I got hurt." Duchene missed a few games with an oblique injury in late November and then had a virus that zapped his strength. He finally feels back at full strength, he said. "When it goes in, it goes in," Duchene said. "When it doesnt, it doesnt, and thats hockey. You just want to keep it going." Barrie scored on a 5-on-3 power play early in the second period, courtesy of Gagners crosscheck and an unsportsmanlike penalty against Hall. Gagner and Stastny were battling after a faceoff when Gagner used both hands to shove his stick into Stastnys face. Stastny stayed down on the ice for a moment before heading over to the bench, where the trainers appeared to examine his nose. Gagner was assessed a major penalty and sent to the locker room. Hall drew an unsportsmanlike penalty at the end of the period. "Taylor Hall did not say one thing to that referee," Eakins said. "Another player said it that was going down the hallway, and it was nothing terrible. "To light up a guy, to put you down 5-on-3, I came out at the start of the period, after a cooling off period, as were supposed to do as coaches, and was basically told by the ref to ... I cant say what he said to me. Just looking for simple explanations but couldnt get them." NOTES: Oilers D Corey Potter finished his two-game suspension for boarding Anaheim F Nick Bonino over the weekend. He is eligible to play Saturday against St. Louis. ... Hall and Nugent-Hopkins each had a goal and an assist. http://www.soccerbelgiumonline.com/Nicolas-Lombaerts-UEFA-European-Belgium-Jersey/
. Rinehart joins safety Darrell Stuckey and linebacker Donald Butler as potential unrestricted free agents who are remaining with the team. Nacer Chadli Jersey
. Nathan Beaulieu, Tomas Jurco, Danick Gauthier and Jonathan Huberdeau had a goal and an assist each as the Sea Dogs extended the longest streak in the Canadian Hockey League this season. http://www.soccerbelgiumonline.com/Radja-Nainggolan-UEFA-European-Belgium-Jersey/
.Ryan Anderson had 14 points for the Pelicans, who trailed 78-63 after three periods before trimming the deficit to 86-83. Jrue Holiday had 13 points and Eric Gordon added 12 for New Orleans.Mike Scott and Jeff Teague each had 11 points for Atlanta.The Toronto Blue Jays have just passed the quarter mark in the season, at the .500 mark at 21-21. Thats not overwhelming, but its still four games better than they were a year ago when they were sitting at 17-25 through May 17. More importantly, now, they are tied with the Boston Red Sox for third in the American League East, just a game-and-a half back of the first-place Baltimore Orioles. Not only that, they have the top-ranked hitting team in the American League with a .255 average , 56 homers and a league-leading 207 runs scored and the top OPS of .762. Theyve improved by leaps and bounds in the fielding department, as well. Theyve committed only 20 errors in 42 games, second fewest to only Baltimores 19 in the American League. There are still a few red flags, though. The Blue Jays team ERA is 4.56, ranked 11th in the American League and worst in their own division. With the problems at the back end of the rotation - Brandon Morrow (DL now), J.A Happ ( struggling until Thursday night) and Dustin McGowan (moved to the bullpen on Thursday) - the Jays have still managed 19 quality starts in 42 games. Thats tied with the Yankees for second in their division behind Bostons 27. Tampa Bay has 14 quality starts, largely because three of their starting pitchers have been injured, and Baltimore is somehow leading the division with only 13 quality starts. Another thing that should be of concern is who the Jays have been beating. They are a combined 10-3 against the Philadelphia Phillies, Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros, teams that have a combined record of 50-70. The Jays are 11-18 against all the rest. Remember, too, over their final 120 games, exactly half are against their own division. Then you have seven against the AL West-leading Oakland Athletics, six against the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers and 13 Interleague games including four with the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers, three with the St. Louis Cardinals, three with the Cincinnati Reds and a bit of a respite in September with three at home against the Cubs. The two biggest question marks are how they sort out those four and five slots in their rotation and whether they can start playing better against the teams in their own division with regularity the rest of the way. Right now they are only 7-9 against the East and 16-19 against the entire American League with the season nearly seven weeks old. - You may have missed it since it was a west coast game, but the Miami Marlins called up 24-year-old right hander Anthony DeSclafani the other night after the injury to their ace Jose Fernandez and gave him his first Major League start against the Dodgers in Los Angeles. He was almost considered a throw-in in the massive deal with the Blue Jays two years ago, that brought Mark Buehrle, Jose Reyes and others to the Jays. DeSclafani didnt disappoint in his debut. He pitched six solid innings, striking out seven in a 13-3 blowout of the Dodgers. He not only got his first Major League win, but he stroked a two-run single for his first Majjor League hit. http://www.soccerbelgiumonline.com/Kevin-De-Bruyne-UEFA-European-Belgium-Jersey/
. . The funny thing about the hit is, its one more than the entire Marlins pitching staff had through that night. The Marlins pitchers were a collective 0 for 64. The one mild surprise may be that DeSclafani made it to the Majors before his minor=league teammate lefty Justin Nicolino, who also came over in that trade with the Blue Jays. - Joel Sherman of the New York Post mentioned the other day that the Mets should deal from strength and package a couple of their young arms for a much needed bat and suggested they go after the Blue Jays Jose Bautista or Chicago White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez. The Mets called up two of those dynamite young arms this week in Rafael Montero and Jake deGrom, who went a combined 13 innings and gave up only four runs total. Still, the Mets lost both games at Citi Field, 3-0 Wednesday and 1-0 Thursday. The Mets, though they are 19-21, are still just two games out of a wild card spot in the National League. The pressure is on them to finally make it back to the post-season. They should be an interesting team to watch as the trade season approaches in late June and then on into July. - Bad break for former Blue Jays catching prospect Travis DArnaud, who went over to the Mets as part of the R.A. Dickey deal. He was accidently struck on the head by the follow-through swing by the bat of Alfonso Soriano of the Yankees on Tuesday night. He experienced headaches afterwards and then was put on the seven-day concussion disabled list. - Jose Abreu, the White Sox Cuban slugge,r is off to an incredible start in the Majors. He has 15 homers in his first 42 games. Hes only the fourth player in Major League history to accomplish that feat joining Wally Berger, Kevin Maas and Wally Joyner. Of the latter three, Joyner had the best career, but was always overshadowed by the steroid-sluggers of the day including Jose Canseco. - I was wondering the other day if it would be possible for the Yankees Masahiro Tanaka to win the Cy Young Award, the Rookie of the Year and the MVP Award all in the same season. He and Abreu are the top two first-year players so far. Hes already a front runner for the Cy Young and, if he leads the Yankees to a playoff berth, he would have to be considered for the Most Valuable Player as well. - If you think the Blue Jays starting pitching is a question mark, how about the Texas Rangers? Over the past 16 games, the Rangers have had one start of more than six innings by a pitcher other than Yu Darvish. Darvish, of course, is the man the Blue Jays will be facing Friday night to kick off a three-game set at Arlington against Prince Fielder and the Rangers. - The Dodgers are off to much of the same kind of start they were a year ago before the arrival of Yasiel Puig. They are 22-20 and trail the first-place San Francisco Giants by five full games in NL West. Fielding has been a major problem. Theyve made 36 errors in 42 games and have given up 24 unearned runs, tied with Cleveland for the second most in the Majors. Wholesale NFL Jerseys
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