Rookie winger Dominik Kubalik had two goals and three assists to help the Chicago Blackhawks beat the host Edmonton Oilers 6-4 on Saturday in Game 1 of the best-of-five qualifying round series.
The game was played in front of tarps, massive video screens, and empty seats at Rogers Place, which is hosting the 12 Western Conference teams as the NHL completes the 2019-20 season.
Kubalik scored twice in the second period, the first goal chasing starter Mike Smith from the Oilers net (five goals on 23 shots), and the second getting past Mikko Koskinen to make it 6-2. Kubalik had 30 goals and 16 assists before regular-season play was halted in mid-March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews added two goals and an assist, and Dylan Strome, Brandon Saad also scored.
Connor McDavid had a goal and three assists for Edmonton, and Leon Draisaitl, James Neal and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins also scored.
Canadiens 3, Penguins 2, OT: Jeff Petry scored at 13:57 of overtime and Carey Price made 39 saves as Montreal beat Pittsburgh in Game 1 of their best-of-five qualifying round series.
Petry picked up a loose puck in the right faceoff circle and ripped a shot past goalie Matt Murray.
Jonathan Drouin had a chance to win it for Montreal in overtime on a penalty shot when he was held on a breakaway, but the puck rolled off the end of his stick and dribbled wide.
Montreal’s Conor Sheary also failed on a penalty shot with 3:03 left in regulation, missing the net. The game was the first NHL postseason contest with two penalty shots since March 29, 1923.
Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Nick Suzuki scored to give 12th-seeded Montreal a 2-0 lead early in the second period.
The fifth-seeded Penguins rallied midway through the period with Sidney Crosby and Bryan Rust connecting in a 2:39 span.
Murray stopped 32 shots.
Islanders 2, Panthers 1: Semyon Varlamov stopped 27 shots and New York opened the series with a victory over Florida.
Anthony Beauvillier scored on a power play at 3:39 of the second period. The goal came a little over a minute after Florida’s Mike Matheson was penalized for a hit to the head on defenseman Johnny Boychuk, who did not return.
Islanders trade deadline addition Jean-Gabriel Pageau opened the scoring re-directing in Derick Brassard’s centering pass 12 minutes into the game. Jonathan Huberdeau scored 23 seconds into the third for Florida.
Hurricanes 3, Rangers 2: Sebastian Aho had a goal and an assist in Carolina’s opening victory over New York.
Jaccob Slavin scored 1 minute, 1 second in on Carolina’s first shot on goal. Martin Necas also scored. Mika Zibanejad and Marc Staal scored for the Rangers.
Petr Mrazek stopped 24 shots, and the sixth-seeded Hurricanes defeated the 11th-seeded Rangers for only the seventh time in 38 meetings going back to the 2010-11 season. The Hurricanes had also lost five straight to New York, including being swept in their four-game regular-season series.