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Avalanche 2 - Buffalo 1 (SO)

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What a great game (and not just because the Avs pulled out a "chintzy" win, as Ryan Miller called it). It was a game that saw two good defenses keep two great offenses in check. With the defensive effort, inensity and physical - but mostly clean - play, this thing looked a lot like a playoff hockey game. And it wouldn't shock me to see these two teams facing each other in the Stanley Cup Finals next spring.

Early in the game, Patrick Kaleta goaded Ian Laperriere into dropping the gloves...and then skated away with his tail between his legs. If you thought that dick moved looked familiar, it's because we've seen it before:

Before the draw, Ian Laperriere swaps with Ossi Vaananen to pair off with Patrick Kaleta. The two start jawing; Lappy, seems to think they have an agreement to fight, as his gloves go flying as soon as the puck drops. Kaleta, though, pulls a Barnaby and keeps playing.

Adam Mair pulled a similar stunt late in the game, going so far as to punch Adam Foote. When Foote turned to square off, Mair refused to fight. Lame, lame stuff from the Sabres. This is not shocking from a team coached by Lindy Ruff who, as usual, was quick to point fingers after the game ("I don't like it either after watching it," Ruff said. "It's a tough call. It's a patented Ryan Smyth. It's a great play if you get away with it.") I don't believe his team has ever lost a game for any reason other than a bad call by the refs. (I do think he's a hell of a coach, but the crybaby stuff really gets under the proverbial craw).

Early in the game, before the Kaleta dodge, Ian Laperriere stepped in between Andrew Peters and Cody McLeod, who were about to fight. If I'm not mistaken, that's the 2nd type Lappy has intervened when McLeod was headed for a fight. I wonder why he's doing that?

Oh, and the Avs have now won 10 of their last 14 regular season games (going back to last year, of course).