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Wings put Avalanche, Roy away quickly

6/1/2002

DETROIT (AP) -- The Detroit Red Wings chased Patrick Roy and sent
the Colorado Avalanche packing.

Detroit scored on its first two shots and knocked out the
Colorado goalie early in the second period as the Red Wings
eliminated the defending Stanley Cup champion Avalanche with a 7-0
victory Friday night in Game 7 of the Western Conference finals.

``We thought it would be a 1-0 game, or go into overtime, or be
a 2-0 game,'' Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman said. ``We were still
thinking after the first period, 'This isn't the way it's supposed
to be.''

While Roy struggled, Dominik Hasek set an NHL record with his fifth
shutout in one postseason.

Hasek didn't care that he set a record while helping the Red
Wings move a big step closer to the ultimate prize with the largest
margin of victory in an NHL Game 7.

``It doesn't mean anything,'' said Hasek, who sought a trade to
Detroit to complete his resume with a Stanley Cup. ``It's nice, but
I have other goals and they're not about shutouts in the
playoffs.''

The Red Wings will open the Stanley Cup finals Tuesday night at
home against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Hasek finished strong with 19 saves for his second consecutive shutout, while Roy allowed four goals in the first period for the
first time in his storied 240-game playoff career.

``I didn't have time to feel bad for him,'' Hasek said. ``That
can happen to any goalie.''

Hasek won his first Game 7 in three chances. Roy and the
Avalanche had won their past four Game 7s, including two shutout
victories over Los Angeles and San Jose this season.

In a dramatic series highlighted by three overtimes and
spectacular play by more than a dozen future Hall of Famers, the
Red Wings weren't interested in adding more drama to one of
hockey's best rivalries.

Tomas Holmstrom scored the first of his two goals on Detroit's
first shot, 1:57 into the game. Then 80 seconds later, Sergei
Fedorov's fluttering slap shot from the left circle got past Roy.

Midway through the first period, Luc Robitaille slipped a shot
through Roy's pads. Roy kicked the puck out of the net, skated to
the boards to his right, then sprayed water on his face during an
ensuing timeout as red-clad fans chanted ``Pa-trick! Pa-trick!''

It got even worse for Roy and the Avalanche at 12:51 of the
first when the Red Wings took a 4-0 lead on Holmstrom's goal off a
a rebound of Robitaille's shot.

Roy then rested for a few seconds on his back in the back of the
net, probably wishing he was on a bed with covers available to pull
over his head.

Brett Hull put Detroit ahead 5-0 at 4:41 of the second period
with a wrist shot just over Roy's glove, then the Red Wings scored
when Fredrik Olausson connected at 6:28 of the second.

After Roy let out a big sigh, Colorado coach Bob Hartley
replaced him with David Aebischer for the first time this
postseason.

``He didn't want to come out,'' Hartley said. ``We all know
Patrick, how much of a competitor he is. ... Especially after the
season that he gave us, I think that he had seen enough tonight, so
it was time to give him a break.''

Roy regretted that the Avalanche didn't eliminate Detroit when
they were ahead 3-2 in the series and at home for Game 6.

``There's going to be a lot of times we're going to think about
that,'' Roy said. ``Game 7s are tough to win on the road.''

The Avs, along with the rest of the NHL, know that well.

They have lost their last four Game 7s on the road and the home
team has won eight of the last nine Game 7s in the NHL.

Colorado became the first NHL team to play in four consecutive
Game 7s, dating to last year when the Avalanche won the Stanley
Cup, and joined the 1993 Toronto Maple Leafs as the only teams to
play in three Game 7s in one postseason.

The Red Wings played in their first Game 7 since beating St.
Louis 1-0 in overtime of the 1996 Western Conference semifinals.

These rivals, who have combined to win four of the past six
Stanley Cups, met for the fifth time in the postseason since 1996,
but played in a Game 7 for the first time.

While the Red Wings appeared fresh, the Avs looked
understandably haggard because of their demanding postseason and
short bench.

Colorado was without forwards Dan Hinote (leg) and Stephane
Yelle (neck) while forwards Mike Keane and Alex Tanguay were
pressed into duty despite lingering injuries.

``We have no excuses,'' Colorado captain Joe Sakic said.

Game notes
While with Buffalo, Hasek lost both Game 7s he played: the
1994 Eastern Conference finals to New Jersey and the conference semifinals last year to Pittsburgh. ... The seven goals Colorado
gave up were the most in the playoffs since a 7-3 defeat to San Jose
on April 30, 1999. ... Detroit shut out a playoff opponent in
consecutive games for the first time since 1992. ... Detroit rookie
Pavel Datsyuk added the seventh goal midway through the final
period.