Stu Barnes scored twice - once when Montreal's Vladimir Malakhov knocked the puck into his own net - and the Pittsburgh Penguins evened their first-ever playoff series against the Canadiens by winning 4-1 Saturday night.
Barnes, constantly working free for shots as Montreal's three-defenseman line occupied itself with NHL scoring champ Jaromir Jagr, also set up Pittsburgh's first goal as the Penguins followed a familiar playoff pattern.The Penguins are 8-1 in Game 2 when they lose Game 1, as they have in seven of their last nine playoff series.
Game 3 will be Monday night in the still not sold-out Molson Centre, where the Penguins were 2-0-1 this season - half as many victories as they managed in more than a quarter-century of visits to the now-shuttered Forum.
Both teams scored on two-man advantages in the first period before the Penguins took a 2-1 lead in the second on a shot they didn't take.
With defenseman Igor Ulanov occupied up ice with Jagr, Barnes skated unimpeded across the left circle and was tripped by Malakhov as he went sprawling across the goal line.
But Barnes managed to put his stick on the puck and Malakhov, attempting to swipe it out of harm's way, inadvertently shot it into his own net for the go-ahead goal at 10:42 of the second.
After that, the Penguins took advantage of referee Kerry Fraser's reluctance to call penalties after giving each team a two-man advantage in the first period. He called only three more penalties the rest of the game, and Pittsburgh benefited from the relaxed officiating to repeatedly disrupt any Canadiens attempts at up-ice rushes.
BLUES 2, KINGS 1: Jim Campbell slipped a backhander between Jamie Storr's pads with 8:23 to go as the St. Louis Blues beat the Los Angeles Kings to take a two games to none series lead.
Game 2 featured a lot tighter checking than the opener, an 8-3 St. Louis victory. After being limited to 15 shots in the first two periods, the Blues turned up the pressure with 12 shots in the third against Storr, a rookie making his first career playoff start.
The Kings, shorthanded after Jozef Stumpel pulled down Craig Conroy on a Blues' 2-on-1 chance, missed a couple chances to clear the zone. Pierre Turgeon got control of the puck at the top of the right circle and fed it to a wide-open Campbell in front for his third goal of the playoffs.
The Blues had been 0-for-6 on the power play before the goal from Campbell, who had 22 in the regular season.
Chris Pronger scored in the second period for the Blues and Grant Fuhr stopped 26 shots for his 82nd career playoff victory. Game 3 is Monday night in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles continued to struggle with the man advantage, going 0-for-8 Saturday and 0-for-8 in Game 1.
The Blues are 5-0-1 against the Kings including the regular season and have won 11 of 14 counting their stretch drive. Los Angeles has dropped 10 of 15.