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Canadian Press
10/21/2006 10:03:45 PM


MONTREAL (CP) - Jose Theodore allowed five third-period goals against his former team as the Montreal Canadiens skated to an 8-5 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday night.

The goaltending showdown between Theodore and Montreal's David Aebischer, who were traded for each other in March, turned into a shooting gallery with goals in bunches from both teams, with Colorado outshooting Montreal 38-36.

Theodore, greeted with derisive chants from the Bell Centre crowd of 21,273 throughout the match, was beaten by Michael Ryder during a five-on-three 29 seconds into the third period, then saw the floodgates open for goals by Craig Rivet, Chris Higgins, Alex Kovalev and Mike Johnson.

Sheldon Souray got his fourth and fifth power-play goals of the season and added two assists, while Sergei Samsonov also scored for Montreal (4-1-2).

Colorado had two goals from Andrew Brunette and singles from Joe Sakic, Tyler Arnason and Paul Stastny, the son of former Quebec Nordiques star Peter Stastny who scored his first NHL goal.

It was the homecoming match for the former Canadiens star goaltender Theodore and for defenceman Patrice Brisebois, who had two assists despite being booed.

The Avalanche (3-3-2) were coming off wins in Toronto and Ottawa this week.

It was as though the clock was turned back 15 years and the Avalanche were still the Nordiques as scorers named Stastny and Sakic led Colorado to a 3-1 first-period lead.

Sakic converted a Marek Svatos pass into an open side on a rush at 15:26 and set up Brunette's goal only 26 seconds later.

Stastny's shot on Milan Hejduk's rebound trickled past Aebischer at 16:42.

Souray got his first of the night with a point shot on a power-play that beat Theodore stick side at 17:20. Souray pounded in another with the man advantage 4:22 into the second frame.

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