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Bobrovsky leads Flyers past Maple Leafs

Wednesday, 09.21.2011 / 1:19 AM / Roundup

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Bobrovsky leads Flyers past Maple Leafs
Ilya Bryzgalov may be the No. 1 goaltender in Philadelphia now, but Sergei Bobrovsky reminded folks Tuesday night that he is more than capable when called upon.

Ilya Bryzgalov may be the No. 1 goaltender in Philadelphia now, but Sergei Bobrovsky reminded folks Tuesday night that he is more than capable when called upon.

Bobrovsky made 27 saves as the Flyers cruised to a 4-0 victory in their preseason opener against the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

The Flyers scored three times in the second period to break open a scoreless game, with forwards Zac Rinaldo, Wayne Simmonds and Mike Testwuide beating Leafs goalie James Reimer in an 11-minute span. Sean Couturier scored for Philadelphia in the third period.

Bobrovsky's biggest stop came during a Leafs' two-man advantage in the third period, going post-to-post to rob Leafs winger Clarke MacArthur.

The game was also notable as it featured two pairs of brothers going to head to head, with established NHLers Luke Schenn and Phil Kessel suiting up for Toronto against Philadelphia prospects Brayden Schenn and Blake Kessel.

"I actually thought he played pretty well," Luke Schenn said of his younger brother. "Nothing flashy or over the top, but I think he played sound defensively and won a lot of faceoffs. He was good on the penalty kills and made a few good plays. I tried to get his attention a couple of times, but he was all business."

Rinaldo opened the scoring at 7:25 of the second when he took a pass from Jakub Voracek at the blue line, beat a diving Schenn and then swooped in on Reimer and slid the puck between the Toronto goaltender's legs.

With Toronto's Schenn serving a holding penalty, Simmonds made it 2-0 at 16:11 of the second, when he deflected Carle's point past a screened Reimer.

Less than three minutes later, Testwuide took a pass from Carle at the left faceoff circle and wristed a high shot over Reimer's blocker to give the Flyers a 3-0 edge heading into the final 20 minutes.

Couturier made it 4-0 early in the third, when he capitalized on a turnover and wristed a shot past Reimer's glove at 2:40.

"Couple of bad bounces, I guess," Reimer said. "The onus is on me. I've got to make four more saves. It's always my goal to be better than the other goalie, and Bobrovsky was pretty good out there tonight. I just wasn't up to the task tonight. It (stinks) to start off that way, but the silver lining is that it is preseason and now's as good a time as any to get the kinks out."

Predators 2, Capitals 0

In the first NHL game played in Baltimore since 1997, Chris Mueller had a goal and an assist to lead Nashville past Washington.

Niclas Bergfors had a pair of assists for the Predators (2-1), who were playing their third game in two days after facing Florida in a doubleheader Monday.

Mueller scored from the left side of the net off a cross-ice pass Shea Weber at 17:31 of the second period. Mueller played 15 games as a rookie with Nashville last season without scoring a goal.
Colin Wilson scored at 8:59 of the third period.

Pekka Rinne started in goal for Nashville before being replaced by Jeremy Smith around the halfway point of the second period.

Smith saved the shutout by stopping a blast by Ovechkin in the closing seconds.

It was the first hockey game in the city since the Baltimore Bandits of the American Hockey League left town 14 years ago. The Capitals last played in Baltimore in 1992, against their then-AHL affiliate, the Baltimore Skipjacks.

Stars 6, Canadiens 3

Brendan Morrow, Adam Pardy and Michael Ryder scored in the first period as Dallas skated past Montreal at the Bell Centre in the preseason opener for both teams.

Krys Barch also beat Carey Price while Mike Ribeiro and Matt Fraser added goals against Nathan Lawson. Price allowed four goals on 13 shots.

"We got off to a good start and then they had a real big push for about 10 minutes in the second," Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. "I thought we responded pretty good in the third.

Erik Cole, Andrei Kostitsyn and Jeff Woywitka scored for Montreal. The Stars outshot Montreal 25-19 overall.

"We had the puck in their zone a couple of minutes and when it went in it was awesome," said Woywitka, a former Star, after his first home game as a Canadien.

Andrew Raycroft started for Dallas and allowed three goals on 11 shots. Tyler Beskorowany took over in the second period and stopped all eight shots.

The Canadiens began a string of six exhibitions in seven nights. They play host to Buffalo on Wednesday. Dallas returns home to face Colorado on Thursday.

Morrow left midway through the third period with a sore knee.

"I had a little tweak and I figured I'd better give it a little break before it got any worse," Morrow said. "It was more a precaution than anything. It's day to day.

"Tonight we felt good. We had good speed, created some turnovers and got some pucks to the net."

Blue Jackets 5, Jets 1

Maksim Mayorov had a goal and assist for Columbus, and Evander Kane scored Winnipeg's first goal and Columbus beat Winnipeg at Nationwide Arena in a split-squad preseason opener for both clubs.

Kane flicked home a backhand at 6:21 of the second period for Winnipeg's first goal since 1996, the year the NHL left town for Phoenix and returned 15 years later from Atlanta.

Columbus' Nick Holden started the scoring in the first period while Boone Jenner, Mayorov, Antoine Vermette and Samuel Pahlsson added second-period goals for the Blue Jackets.

Kane made it 3-1 off the rush on a feed from Blake Wheeler.

Blues 3, Lightning 1

Evgeny Gratchev scored twice as St. Louis skated past Tampa Bay at the Scottrade Center.

Matt D'Agostini also scored for St. Louis, and Brian Elliott made 21 saves in his Blues debut after signing as a free agent on July 1. Jamie Langenbrunner and David Backes each had two assists.

"Pucks tonight were hitting me and sticking to me, so it felt pretty good," Elliott said. "It's good to just get right into the fire and play the first one. It was fun playing here at home. The guys obviously played great. Grachie got a couple of goals, so that was nice to see."

Steve Downie had a power-play goal for the Lightning, and Mathieu Garon and Jaroslav Janus split the game in goal for Tampa Bay.

D'Agostini snapped a shot past Janus with 3:07 remaining in the second, giving the Blues a 2-1 lead.
Grachev put the Blues on top with a power-play goal, knocking in a rebound of a Jamie Langenbrunner shot at 15:16 of the first period. Grachev also had an empty-netter.

Wild 4, Oilers 3

Jared Spurgeon scored twice -- including the power-play winner with 1:46 remaining in the third period -- as Minnesota won its preseason opener at Edmonton.

Spurgeon's goal came with Taylor Hall in the penalty box for inadvertently high-sticking Justin Falk while swinging at a loose puck.

Jarod Palmer and Pierre-Marc Bouchard also scored for the Wild.

Anton Lander, Magnus Paajarvi and Antti Tyrvainen replied for the Oilers, who played a split squad game, with another group playing at the same time against Chicago in Saskatoon.

The Wild started the scoring just two minutes into the game as a weak clearing attempt by Hall led to a hopeful shot from the point by Spurgeon which deflected off the ankle of Edmonton's Martin Marancin and past goalie Nikolai Khabibulin.

Minnesota went up 2-0 on a power play with five minutes to go in the opening period. Khabibulin made a stop on the initial shot by Kyle Brodziak, but Palmer lifted the rebound into the net.

The Wild took a three-goal lead with a minute and a half to play in the first as Khabibulin waved at a top corner shot on a 2-on-1 by Bouchard.

Edmonton finally got on the board five minutes into the second just as a Minnesota penalty had expired. Lander corralled a rebound on a knuckleball point shot from Marincin and slipped the puck into the empty net behind Wild starter Josh Harding.

The teams both changed goalies at the midway point of the game. Tyler Bunz came on for Khabibulin, who made seven saves on 10 shots, and Matt Hackett replaced Harding, who stopped 14 of 15.

Coyotes 7, Ducks 4

Patrick O'Sullivan had a pair of goals in the third period as Phoenix skated past Anaheim at the Honda Center.

O'Sullivan also had two assists for the Coyotes, who received a 20-save effort from Curtis McElhinney. Mark Visentin came on in relief of McElhinney and stopped six of seven shots.

Andy Miele, who won the Hobey Baker Award as college hockey's top player in 2011, had a goal and two assists and was a plus-3.

Andrew Cogliano, who is entering his first season with Anaheim, had a goal and two assists, while Kyle Palmieri had a goal and an assist. Sean Zimmerman also scored for the Ducks.

Igor Bobkov stopped 16 of 19 shots for Anaheim.

Canucks 4, Flames 3

Jordan Schroeder scored the tying goal early in the third period and had an assist on first-round draft pick Nicklas Jensen's go-ahead score as Vancouver edged Calgary at Rogers Arena.

Marco Sturm had a goal and an assist in his Canucks debut after signing as a free agent, and defenseman Chris Tanev scored on a shorthanded 2-on-1.

Niklas Hagman scored twice, and Mikael Backlund had the other goal for Calgary. Leland Irving made 18 saves while playing the entire split-squad game.

Oilers 4, Blackhawks 2

Jordan Eberle scored the game-winning goal late in the third period and Ryan Smyth netted a goal and two assists as Edmonton beat Chicago at the Credit Union Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Eberle, who skated on a line with veteran Ryan Smyth and rookie Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, scored the game-winner for the Oilers. Josh Green scored twice, including an empty-net goal in the third to ice the victory.

Material from wire services and team media was used in this report.

Quote of the Day

He seemed to thrive on his own and didn't really need any push from me. I certainly don't want to get in the way of the coaches. You see how that goes sometimes. I never really worried about it and just enjoyed the ride.

— David Ekblad on his son's [Aaron Ekblad] journey to the NHL, signing with the Florida Panthers