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CuJo, Leafs Shutout Avalanche


Curtis Joseph picked a good time for his first shutout of the season.

Joseph stopped 24 shots as the Toronto Maple Leafs snapped a three-game losing streak with a 3-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday night.

"Anytime you get a shutout it's special," Joseph said. "They're tough to come by. We played really well defensively and limited their players' chances."

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  • Steve Sullivan, Mats Sundin and Steve Thomas scored for the Maple Leafs.

    "This was a really important win," Thomas said. "We didn't want it to go to four in a row. We have to win some games in our building to make it more difficult for the team coming in here."

    Joseph, who played for St. Louis and Edmonton before signing with Toronto in the off-season, got his first regular-season victory over the Avalanche. He had been 0-11-1 against Colorado in the regular season, although he did beat them in the playoffs last year.

    The Maple Leafs scored all their goals in the second period to beat Colorado in Toronto for the first time since Jan. 6, 1996.

    Patrick Roy made 25 saves for the Avalanche, who fell to 3-7-1.

    "I thought we would be ready for this game, but I was wrong," said Roy. "Sullivan made a pretty good shot and Thomas made an unbelievable shot."

    Colorado remained tied with the expansion Nashville Predators for the second-worst record in the Western Conference.

    "This is the worst start since I've been here," said Peter Forsberg, who had his points streak halted at seven games. "We just have to get things going and hope we can play better next time."

    The Leafs won despite going 0-for-4 on the power play. They are 4-for-60 this season with th man advantage, worst in the NHL.

    Sullivan ripped a shot over Roy's shoulder at 2:29 to open the scoring.

    Thomas made it 2-0 when he picked off a Colorado pass at the blue line, broke in alone and blasted a shot past Roy. Sundin scored his fifth goal of the season 3:30 later when he scored off a rebound from Igor Korolev's shot.

    Less than a minute after Thomas' goal, three fights broke out -- Jeff Odgers vs. Tie Domi, Rene Corbet vs. Jason Smith and Greg De Vries vs. Kris King. All were ejected except Odgers and Domi.

    "I think that was intentional on their part," said Leafs coach Pat Quinn. "I was just angry with their bench and the ref."

    Avalanche coach Bob Hartley scoffed at the notion.

    "Pat just has to buy a scale and see the guys who we had on the ice," Hartley said. "He was pretty equipped out there (with Domi and King)."

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