Blues and Avalanche win overtime contests
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Colorado and St. Louis both needed overtime to win their NHL playoff openers on Thursday while the New York Rangers and San Jose both had more comfortable wins on home ice.
St. Louis’ Alexander Steen scored 26 seconds into third overtime to give the Blues a 4-3 victory over defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago in Game 1 of their first-round series, while Colorado needed a tying goal with 13 seconds left in regulation and then a Paul Stastny goal in overtime to edge Minnesota 5-4.
New York won at home against Philadelphia for the ninth-straight time, downing the Flyers 4-1, while San Jose quickly got on top of Los Angeles and beat the Kings 6-3.
St. Louis’ Steen scored the winning goal off a pair of short passes from Steve Ott and David Backes to cap the longest overtime game in franchise history.
The Blues’ previous longest overtime game was a 4-3 loss at Detroit in 1984 that extended 37 minutes, 7 seven seconds.
St. Louis had to kill off delay-of-game penalties for shooting the puck into the stands in the first two overtimes. The Blackhawks killed a holding penalty in the second overtime.
Patrick Kane scored on a breakaway to put Chicago up 3-2 late in the first period and Jaden Schwartz tied it for the Blues with 1:45 to go in regulation.
Schwartz, Vladimir Tarasenko and Adam Cracknell all scored their first playoff goals for the Blues.
Defensemen Johnny Oduya and Brent Seabrook also scored for Chicago.
Colorado’s Paul Stastny used close-in wrist shots both to score 7:27 into overtime and earlier as he tied the game with 13.4 seconds remaining in regulation.
Gabriel Landeskog, Ryan O’Reilly and Jamie McGinn also added goals for Colorado in coach Patrick Roy’s postseason debut behind the bench. The Hall of Fame goaltender led the Avalanche to two Stanley Cup titles as a player.
Erik Haula, Charlie Coyle, Ryan Suter and Kyle Brodziak scored for the Wild.
New York’s Brad Richards and Derek Stepan scored power-play goals 47 seconds apart in the third period to help the Rangers beat Philadelphia.
The teams were locked 1-1 when Jason Akeson — playing in just his third career NHL game — was given a double high-sticking penalty for clipping Rangers forward Carl Hagelin with 7:35 remaining.
New York quickly took advantage. Richards gave the Rangers their first lead of the night when a rebound came to him, and he fired it in from the right circle.
Richards and St. Louis hooked up again to help set up Stepan’s insurance goal. Hagelin pushed New York’s edge to 4-1 with 4:08 left.
Defenseman Andrew MacDonald had given the Flyers a 1-0 lead in the first, but the Rangers answered with Mats Zuccarello’s goal.
San Jose’s Tomas Hertl and Raffi Torres both scored in their first game together as teammates to help the Sharks defeat Los Angeles.
Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Marc-Edouard Vlasic also scored for the Sharks, who managed just 10 goals in losing a seven-game series to Los Angeles in the playoffs last year. Antti Niemi made 31 saves.
Kings goalie Jonathan Quick allowed three goals in the first period for the first time in his playoff career, including two in the final minute as the Kings were completely outclassed.
He was replaced by Martin Jones after allowing five goals on 28 shots in two periods and only watched as the Kings showed life in the third period with goals from Jake Muzzin, Slava Voynov and Trevor Lewis.
But Brent Burns sealed it with an empty-net goal as the home team won for the 17th time in the past 18 meetings between these teams.