Defenseman Barret Jackman scored his first career playoff goal with 50.4 seconds left, lifting the host St. Louis Blues to a 2-1 victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night.
Jackman, a stay-at-home type who totaled three goals and 12 points in the regular season, joined a rush and scored in transition against Jonathan Quick, last year's playoff MVP.
He beat Quick from just inside the blue line for a 2-0 series lead heading to Los Angeles.
Patrik Berglund's deflection tied it early in the third period for St. Louis, which was swept by the Kings in the second round last season. Dustin Brown scored for the Kings, who'll try to rebound in Game 3 on Saturday.
The Blues capitalized on a stickhandling goof by Quick to win the opener on Alex Steen's short-handed goal in overtime.
Red Wings 5, Ducks 4: Gustav Nyquist's power-play goal at 1:21 of overtime after Detroit blew a three-goal lead in the third period gave the visiting Red Wings a victory over Anaheim to even their playoff series 1-1.
Johan Franzen scored two goals and Damien Brunner had his first Stanley Cup playoff goal and two assists for the Red Wings, who survived a third-period collapse.
Bobby Ryan scored the tying goal with 2:22 left in regulation for the Ducks, who also got goals from captain Ryan Getzlaf and Kyle Palmieri while erasing Detroit's 4-1 lead.
Capitals 3, Rangers 1: Alex Ovechkin's franchise-record 31st career playoff goal got host Washington started before less-heralded teammates Marcus Johansson and Jason Chimera scored 46 seconds apart in Game 1.
Only 33 seconds after the Rangers' Arron Asham was whistled for an illegal check to the head in the second period, Capitals defenseman Mike Green sent the puck toward the net. The shot missed everything, but the ricochet off the boards went to Ovechkin, who flipped it past Henrik Lundqvist.
"Kind of a lucky bounce, but I'll take it," said Ovechkin, a two-time MVP who led the NHL with 32 goals this season.
Senators 4, Canadiens 2: Craig Anderson made 48 saves in a spectacular goaltending performance as Ottawa beat host Montreal in Game 1.
"Andy's our MVP," said Ottawa defenseman Marc Methot, who scored the winning goal. "He's a machine back there."
The first playoff series between the Northeast Division rivals didn't take long to get nasty.
Canadiens center Lars Eller suffered a concussion, plus facial and dental fractures on a hit from Ottawa defenseman Eric Gryba. Eller was taken from the ice on a stretcher and spent the night in a hospital.
A pool of blood was left on the ice after Eller had taken an ill-considered pass from Raphael Diaz and was flattened by Gryba with a hit the NHL is likely to review. Gryba was given a major penalty for interference and a game misconduct.
"It was a hockey play," Ottawa coach Paul MacLean said. "Our guy hit him, but player 61 (Diaz) is the guy to blame."
"I can't comment," was all Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said.
Wild: Goalie Niklas Backstrom and Clayton Stoner didn't practice, increasing the possibility they'll be unavailable for Game 2 against Chicago on Friday. Jason Pominville also missed practice and won't travel to Chicago. Chicago goalie Ray Emery and Dave Bolland also have been ruled out.
Bruins: Andrew Ference was suspended for a game by the league for an illegal check to Toronto forward Mikhail Grabovski's head during Game 1.