Maple Leafs defeat Canadiens in NHL season opener

Chicago spoils Kings’ title party

Toronto’s Phil Kessel took a shot on Canadiens' goaltender Carey Price in the third period Saturday night. (AP)
Toronto’s Phil Kessel took a shot on Canadiens' goaltender Carey Price in the third period Saturday night. (AP) –AP

Nazem Kadri and Tyler Bozak scored power-play goals as the Toronto Maple Leafs opened the lockout-shortened NHL season with a 2-1 victory over the Canadiens on Saturday night in Montreal.

Michael Kostka, playing his first NHL game at 27 years old, earned an assist on Kadri’s goal and was second only to fellow defenseman Dion Phaneuf in ice time for the Maple Leafs in a strong debut performance.

The Leafs outshot the Canadiens, 26-22.

Montreal’s anemic power play was so disjointed for most of the game, it had many in the crowd of 21,273 chanting ‘‘We want P.K.’’ — in reference to holdout point man P.K. Subban. But at 13:51 of the third period, Gionta banged in the rebound off Rafael Diaz’s point shot with a man advantage to make it a one-goal game


The Canadiens dominated the early going, but the Leafs scored on their first shot of the game at 4:51. Phil Kessel’s pass went to Kadri, who lifted the puck into an open side with goalie Carey Price moving the wrong way.

Montreal’s Tomas Plekanec was off for unsportsmanlike conduct after spraying goalie Ben Scrivens with ice when Bozak made it 2-0 at 8:12 of the second frame. A rebound off Kessel went into the slot for the Leafs center to lift over Price’s glove.

Blackhawks 5, Kings 2 — Marian Hossa had two goals and an assist, Corey Crawford made 19 saves, and Chicago crashed the Kings’ Stanley Cup title celebration with a victory in Los Angeles.

Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane each had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks, who jumped to a 3-0 lead on Michael Frolik’s goal less than 15 minutes in. With superior speed and skill, Chicago ruined the party shortly after the Kings raised their first championship banner to the Staples Center rafters.

Rob Scuderi and Jordan Nolan scored and Jonathan Quick stopped 17 shots for the Kings, who returned every player from the first eighth-seeded playoff team to win the Stanley Cup.

Quick gave up five goals just once last season while making his first All-Star team, but he struggled in his first game since winning the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoff MVP and getting a 10-year, $58 million extension.


Penguins 3, Flyers 1 — Tyler Kennedy and James Neal both scored goals to lead Pittsburgh past host Philadelphia.

Claude Giroux scored for the Flyers in the first game for both teams since the end of the 113-day NHL lockout. Chris Kunitz added an empty-netter in the final seconds for the Penguins.

Senators 4, Jets 1 —Erik Karlsson had a goal and an assist to lead Ottawa over host Winnipeg.

Milan Michalek, Kyle Turris, and Chris Neil, with the game-winner in the second period, scored Ottawa’s other goals. Dustin Byfuglien scored for the Jets.

Craig Anderson stopped 27 shots for the Senators, while Winnipeg goalie Ondrej Pavelec faced 37 shots.

Devils 2, Islanders 1 — David Clarkson’s goal at 8:17 of the third period sent New Jersey to a win in Uniondale, N.Y.

Travis Zajac also scored for New Jersey. Martin Brodeur stopped 18 shots to increase his NHL wins record to 657. Travis Hamonic scored and Evgeni Nabokov made 26 saves for the Islanders.

Panthers 5, Hurricanes 1 — Jonathan Huberdeau had a goal and two assists in his NHL debut, Brian Campbell scored twice in a first-period frenzy, and host Florida beat Carolina.

Alex Kovalev also had a goal and two assists in his first game with Florida.

Jose Theodore made 41 saves for the Panthers, who led 4-0 after the first 20 minutes for their highest-scoring period since Dec. 17, 2010.

Lightning 6, Capitals 3 — Martin St. Louis and Eric Brewer each scored two goals as host Tampa Bay beat Washington.

St. Louis added an assist, while Vincent Lecavalier and Cory Conacher also scored goals for the Lightning.


Joel Ward scored twice and Wojtek Wolski also had a goal for the Capitals, who lost in Adam Oates’s NHL coaching debut.

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