NHL ROUNDUP : Chicago Bids Blackhawks a Welcome Home

From Associated Press

Stan Mikita and Bobby Hull are memories. Joe Murphy made one Wednesday night in Chicago.

Murphy scored the first goal in the long-awaited opener of the Blackhawks’ new home, the United Center, and it sparked a surge that took them to their first victory of the season, 5-1, over Edmonton.

Chicago had lost its first two games on the road, then found an advantage in its new home ice.

“No place can ever be like the Stadium. That’s where Stan Mikita and Bobby Hull played, and that atmosphere will never be matched,” captain Dirk Graham said. “But our fans are the greatest in the pro sports and they brought the atmosphere over here.”


They certainly brought their voices. They were as loud as they ever were in 65 years at Chicago Stadium, drowning out both national anthems, but the Blackhawks threatened to quiet them, missing 19 shots until Murphy scored on a power play at 11:33 of the second period.

Chicago outshot the Oilers, 16-1, the rest of the period and took a 5-0 lead before giving up a garbage-time goal.

Pittsburgh 3, New York Rangers 2--Kevin Stevens scored at 4:21 of the final period and goalie Ken Wregget turned back 39 shots to give the Penguins a victory at New York, where the defending Stanley Cup champion Rangers lost by one goal for the third time in four games on home ice.

Montreal 2, Washington 0--Yves Racine’s power play goal in the third period and Patrick Roy’s flawless goaltending gave the Canadiens a victory at home.


Hartford 4, Ottawa 1--Darren Turcotte scored twice, including the first of the Whalers’ three consecutive goals at Hartford, as they won for the first time this season.

Toronto 6, Vancouver 2--Mike Gartner’s two goals at Toronto helped the Maple Leafs to their first victory and kept the Canucks without one.

Buffalo 2, New Jersey 1--Dominik Hasek stopped 29 shots and Wayne Presley scored the winning goal at Buffalo as the Sabres remained undefeated.

Tampa Bay 3, Florida 2--Daren Puppa stopped 26 shots and Brian Bradley had a goal and an assist at Tampa as the Lightning won their first game.


San Jose 4, Winnipeg 0--Arturs Irbe stopped 28 shots for his fifth NHL shutout and Sergei Makarov had his first two goals of the season as the Sharks won at home.