Captain Brenden Morrow has goal and assist to lead Stars over Devils 3-1

Publish date:

Morrow had a goal and an assist for his first points of the season to help the Dallas Stars beat the New Jersey Devils 3-1 in their home opener Saturday night.

Morrow, selected team captain last week, was reluctant to talk about his individual game afterward. The 27-year-old left winger preferred to discuss team goals and accomplishments.

"We are continuing to build character," said Morrow, who signed a US$24.6 million, six-year extension last month. "We want to be a gritty team that's tough to play against, and we feel like we did that tonight."

Morrow's goal gave Dallas a 2-0 lead early in the second. He also assisted on Eric Lindros' score that gave the Stars a two-goal cushion with 2:48 remaining in the game.

Lindros, who has endured several concussions during his career, signed a one-year deal with the Stars in the off-season after playing in only 72 games the past two seasons.

"It wasn't the greatest game I ever played, but we'll take the two points," Lindros said.

Niklas Hagman scored a short-handed goal for Dallas in the first to open the scoring.

Centre Travis Zajac scored his first-career goal on a power play at 8:33 of the second to pull New Jersey within 2-1 in the rematch of the 2000 Stanley Cup Finals.

"It's a relief getting that first one," Zajac said. "But it stings a little bit because it came under not so great circumstances. I'd rather take a win over a goal any day."

Dallas goalie Marty Turco had 19 saves to win his second straight to start the season.

New Jersey's Martin Brodeur, who tied Terry Sawchuk on the all-time wins list Friday night, had 28 saves.

"Any time you can beat Brodeur it's not a bad thing," Dallas coach Dave Tippett said.

Jeff Halpern was whistled for a holding penalty at the 11:07 mark of the first period. But Dallas overcame the penalty 41 seconds later when Stu Barnes hit Hagman, who beat Brodeur in the slot.

The Stars extended their lead to 2-0 in the second. Mike Ribeiro was behind the net where he passed the puck to a wide-open Morrow at 4:44 of the second.

Zajac brought the Devils within a goal, but they could not complete the rally one night after beating defending Stanley Cup champions Carolina 4-0 on Friday night.

New Jersey was 1-of-9 on power plays and was outshot 31-20 - including 25-11 over the first two periods.

"It seemed like we were a second behind every play," New Jersey centre Erik Rasmussen said. "We were a second behind in reacting. It just seemed like we were a little flat all game."

Dallas continued to struggle on the power play, going 0-for-5 - including a missed chance when they had a 5-on-3 advantage for 58 seconds late in the first. They have not scored in nine power-play chances this season.

Notes: Dallas will not play at home again until Oct. 20 against Chicago. The Stars open a four-game road trip with consecutive games next week against the Los Angeles Kings. ... New Jersey C John Madden needs one point for 200 in his career. ... The Stars improved to 7-0-1 in their last eight home openers. They are now 10-2-1 in home openers since moving from Minnesota in 1993. ... The Devils will have four days off before their home opener Thursday against the Toronto Maple Leafs. ... Dallas improved to 2-4-0 against New Jersey since the 2000 Stanley Cup Finals.



Slavin Wins First-Career Lady Byng

Slavin becomes just the fourth defenceman in NHL history to win the Lady Byng Trophy.


Three UFA Goaltenders Coming Off Strong Seasons

Goaltending - like the knuckleball - is a capricious beast. If an NHL GM makes the right call on a UFA twine-minder, he could have it pay off substantially; if he makes the wrong call, his team could be toast. Here are three 2021 UFAs who had good seasons and may be the answer for NHL GMs in the 2021 off-season


Tensions Rise Quickly in Semifinals Between Unfamiliar Foes

The regular season divisional format created tense rivalries, but the final four has proven that there's no love lost for the teams meeting for the first time all year.