Blues 4, Whalers 1
Mar. 06, 1991
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Brett Hull scored twice, giving him a goal against each NHL team for the second straight season, and Adam Oates also had two goals as St. Louis beat Hartford 4-1 Tuesday on Tuesdau night.
Oates' two second-period goals, both set up by Hull, gave the Blues a 3-1 lead and extended the Whalers' winless streak to seven games (0-4-3).
Hull completed his sweep of the NHL by scoring his 71st goal early in the first period. Hull, who sat out one of the Blues three games against Hartford, raced down the left wing around defenseman Brad Shaw, cut in on net and firing a short wrist shot through Hartford goalie Kay Whitmore's legs.
St. Louis goalie Vince Riendeau, returning from a groin pull that had kept him out of action since Feb. 17, faced only 19 shots as he won for the eighth time in his last nine starts.
Oates broke a 1-1 tie when scored 3:45 into the second period on a wrist shot from the left circle past Whitmore's right skate.
Oates scored again with 2:01 left in the period on a rebound of Hull's wrist shot. Oates got the rebound and took a 10-foot backhander that Whitmore deflected but accidentally knocked into the net.
Hull stole a pass from newly acquired defenseman Zarley Zalapski, skated in alone on Whitmore and trickled in a backhander with 11:21 left in the game for a 4-1 lead.
Zalapski and center John Cullen were obtained from Pittsburgh on Monday to add punch to the Whalers offense. But the new-look offense didn't mesh the first night. The Whalers had few quality scoring chances, getting only three shots on goal in the second period and five in the third period.
Whitmore made several key saves early for Hartford, including a right pad save on an Oates 15-foot wrist shot and another right pad stop on Hull's rebound shot from 10 feet with 6:47 left in the first period.
Randy Cunneyworth scored the Whalers lone goal with 1:12 left in the first period.
Hull said he wasn't concerned about scoring against every team in the league.
''If I didn't score tonight it wouldn't have bothered me, not a bit,'' he said. ''As long as we win.''
Hull's second goal tied his own team record for goals in a season, which he set in 1989-90, and his four points gave him 112, one short of his own team mark that was also set last season.
''It's easy with No. 12 out there (Oates),'' Hull said.
Hull and Oates both said the key to the victory was defense.
''We came out kind of sluggishly defensively, but the last two periods we were awesome,'' Hull said.
''We played very well defensively, which is our forte, and waited for our chances and capitalized,'' Oates said.
Hartford coach Rick Ley said he was worried about a lapse following Monday's trade.
''I'd by lying if I said we played well,'' Ley said. ''It was almost like we had a few guys that had a sigh of relief (about not being traded) and relaxed a bit.''
Though the Blues traded four players earlier Tuesday to Vancouver for Dan Quinn and Garth Butcher, Oates said he thinks Hartford's trade of Ron Francis had the biggest impact on the game.
''They changed their career guy here. That's a big shock to anybody and it worked out to our advantage,'' Oates said.
Hull said he felt the Blues' two new players, defenseman Garth Butcher and center Dan Quinn, will fit in quickly.
''From what I saw out there tonight, a couple of games, a couple of practices, and we are going to be awesome,'' he said.