Blackhawks crash LA Kings’ party with 5-2 rout
LOS ANGELES - The Associated Press
Patrick Sharp (L) of the Chicago Blackhawks and Trevor Lewis of the Los Angeles Kings reach for a puck. AFP photoAfter a 113-day lockout, the NHL finally returned to the ice on Jan 19 but it wasn’t the start the defending champions had hoped for as Chicago crashed the Kings’ Stanley Cup celebration with a 5-2 victory.
Marian Hossa had two goals and an assist, Corey Crawford made 19 saves, while captain 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 festivities shortly after the Kings hung their first championship banner in the Staples Center rafters.
With every player who touched the ice in last season’s playoffs returning to defend the title, the Kings received their championship rings during a stirring pregame ceremony that included each player passing the Cup around the boards. The Blackhawks didn’t watch it, but they seemed fired up from the opening faceoff.
Rob Scuderi and Jordan Nolan scored and Jonathan Quick stopped 17 shots for the Kings, who are definitely done celebrating last season’s achievements as the first eighth-seeded playoff team to win the Stanley Cup.
Hossa, who set up Kane’s goal, then got credit for a score when his centering pass hit Drew Doughty’s skate and ricocheted past Quick. Just 74 seconds after that, Frolik put a pall over the celebratory crowd with the Blackhawks’ third goal on eight shots.
At Boston, Tuukka Rask stopped 20 shots for Boston in his first game after taking over for two-time Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas, and the Bruins beat the New York Rangers 3-1. Milan Lucic and Daniel Paille scored for Boston, which won the Northeast Division last year before losing in the first round of the playoffs. Brad Richards scored for the Rangers on an assist from Rick Nash, the former Columbus star who was New York’s biggest acquisition over the summer. Henrik Lundqvist made 31 saves for the Rangers.
In Vancouver, British Columbia, Teemu Selanne had two goals and two assists on Jan. 19 to help the Anaheim Ducks thump the Vancouver Canucks 7-3.
Daniel Winnik added two goals for the Ducks while Sheldon Souray, Corey Perry and Kyle Palmieri also scored. In Sunrise, Florida, Jonathan Huberdeau had a goal and two assists in his NHL debut, Brian Campbell scored twice in a first-period frenzy and the Florida Panthers opened defense of their Southeast Division title with a 5-1 win over the Carolina Panthers.