CHICAGO – Tomas Kopecky and Jonathan Toews each had a goal and an assist, and the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks beat the St. Louis Blues 4-3 on Sunday in the pre-season finale for both teams.
Troy Brouwer and Marian Hossa also scored for Chicago (3-4-0). The Blackhawks open the regular season Thursday in Colorado.
B.J. Crombeen, T.J. Hensick and Patrik Berglund scored for the Blues (5-3-0), who open at home against Philadelphia on Saturday. Ty Conklin stopped 20 shots.
Marty Turco, who will start the season as Chicago’s new No. 1 goalie, also stopped 20 shots. One of the NHL’s most-active puckhandling goalies, Turco helped set up Toews’ goal with a long pass, but also enabled Hensick’s with a giveaway.
The Blackhawks lineup included nearly all of their regulars. Chicago had 25 players on its roster Sunday; NHL teams must trim down to 23 this week.
Blackhawks defenceman Brian Campbell, who suffered a right knee sprain against Pittsburgh on Friday, didn’t skate on Sunday and will miss four to five weeks. Niklas Hjalmarsson, Campbell’s defence partner for most of last season, was paired with 19-year-old rookie Nick Leddy.
St. Louis coach Davis Payne used a lineup of mostly younger players. Sitting out were several top returning Blues players, including Andy McDonald, Brad Boyes, T.J. Oshie, David Backes and Erik Johnson.
After a scoreless first period, the Blackhawks opened a 4-1 lead in the second, scoring their first three goals on consecutive shots.
Kopecky’s power-play goal score, a deflection of Duncan Keith’s shot from the point opened the scoring at 8:43 of the second. Brouwer made it 2-0 just over three minutes later when he connected from the front of the net after Jake Dowell forced a Blues turnover.
Hossa deflected in a shot by rookie Jeremy Morin for a power-play goal with 6:55 left in the period. Crombeen cut it to 3-1 with 3:02 to go in the second by lofting in a rebound.
Toews replied 38 seconds later, completing a rush that was set up by Turco’s long pass from near his own crease to centre ice.
Turco’s giveaway set up Hensick’s goal at 1:51 of the third that cut it to 4-2. Behind the net, the goalie dished the puck right on to the stick of Brad Winchester, who fed Hensick in front of the goal.
Berglund complete the scoring with 2:09 left.