Wild Top Avs 3-1, Take Division Lead

Minnesota alone atop Northwest
By Doug Sweeney,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2008 10:48 PM CDT
Colorado Avalanche center Joe Sakic (19) controls the puck in front of Minnesota Wild center Mikko Koivu (9), of Finland, during the third period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 17, 2008 in St. Paul,...   (AP Photo/Paul Battaglia)
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(Newser) – Three different Minnesota players scored as the Wild topped the Colorado Avalanche 3-1 and gained sole possession of first place in the Northwest Division. Minnesota has a two-point lead over second place Calgary and Colorado. The Wild sorely needed this victory against their division rival, after losing nine of their previous 13 contests overall, according to the Associated Press.

Brent Burns kicked off the scoring with a power play goal midway through the first period. After a Joe Sakic goal tied the game in the second period, Burns fed Branko Radivojevic for what proved to be the game winner. Jose Theodore had 26 saves in the losing effort; it was just the third Avalanche defeat in the past 11 games.