Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

NHL Roundup: Rangers Rout Canadiens to Open East Finals

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

NHL Roundup: Rangers Rout Canadiens to Open East Finals

Article excerpt

MONTREAL * Martin St. Louis and the New York Rangers had a reason to smile in the midst of a weekend of sadness.

St. Louis, who will attend his mother's funeral with his teammates on Sunday, scored the opening goal of the Eastern Conference finals to pace New York's suddenly high-powered offense in a 7-2 rout of the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.

New York got goals from six other players, and Henrik Lundqvist quieted talk of a Montreal jinx in a 20-save effort.

The Rangers have wrested home-ice advantage away from the Canadiens, heading into Game 2 of the series Monday night in Montreal.

"It was an emotional time for everyone, but the guys have been behind me and supported me," said St. Louis.

Mats Zuccarello, Chris Kreider, Brad Richards, Ryan McDonagh, Derek Stepan and Rick Nash also scored for the Rangers, who had netted only four goals in their past nine visits to Montreal.

The quick-footed Rangers, coming off a comeback, seven-game win over Pittsburgh, jumped on a Canadiens team that was flat and mentally absent after a nasty and emotional seven-game win over top- seeded Boston.

"You don't look at the score," Richards said. "That's not indicative of how anything's going to happen in this series.

"We got fortunate. We got some bounces. We got some momentum, and pucks went in the net. It was a win, that's all it was. We're very aware that it's going to be a lot different."

Rene Bourque and Lars Eller scored for Montreal.

Canadiens goalie Carey Price appeared to injure his right leg early in the second when Kreider slid into him. Price remained in the game, but was pulled after giving up two goals late in the second.

Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said Price wasn't injured, and was replaced by Peter Budaj to start the third because the team was playing so poorly in front of him.

NOTEBOOK

Kings, Blackhawks ready for rematch * On Friday night, the Los Angeles Kings were in Anaheim for Game 7 of their second-round series against the top-seeded Ducks. …

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