Stamkos propels Lightning past Blackhawks in opener


TAMPA — Steven Stamkos had a goal and two assists, and the Tampa Bay Lightning began their Stanley Cup defense with a 5-1 win against the Chicago Blackhawks at Amalie Arena on Wednesday.

Brayden Point and Anthony Cirelli each had a goal and an assist and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 22 saves for the Lightning, who won their season opener for a seventh straight year and unveiled their championship banner before the game. Victor Hedman and Alex Killorn each had two assists.

Dylan Strome scored for the Blackhawks. Malcolm Subban made 28 saves.

Ondrej Palat gave Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead with a power-play goal at 10:39 of the first period with a put back off a shot by Hedman.

Mathieu Joseph made it 2-0 at 16:18 of the first period when Subban lost track of his shot and the puck went in off the back of his pad.

Cirelli extended the Lightning lead to 3-0 at 17:57 of the first with a redirection of a slap shot from Erik Cernak.

Stamkos scored on the power play at 9:56 of the second period with a one-timer from the left circle to make it 4-0.

Point scored with a one-timer from the hash marks off a pass from Stamkos at 6:45 of the third to make it 5-0.

Strome ended Vasilevskiy’s shutout with a power-play goal at 16:36 for the 5-1 final.

Video: CHI@TBL: Point finishes one-timer in the slot

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