Chicago’s Connor Bedard authored his first sensational performance after being selected No. 1 overall in June, producing four points as the Blackhawks stormed to a 5-3 win over the host Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.
In his first career multi-point game, Bedard produced two goals and two assists in the first 22:12.
He became the youngest player in Blackhawks history to have a multigoal game and at least three points.
At 18 years and 115 days old, the top-line center is the third-youngest player in NHL history with a four-point game.
Former Lightning players Tyler Johnson and Corey Perry scored goals against their old club, and Chicago rookie defenseman Kevin Korchinski tallied for the first time in his NHL career.
Nick Foligno had three assists for the Blackhawks while Philipp Kurashev managed two. Chicago goaltender Petr Mrazek stopped 30 shots.
Anthony Cirelli had a goal and an assist for the Lightning, and Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos also scored. Mikhail Sergachev dished out his 200th NHL assist.
Jonas Johansson stopped 24 of 29 shots as the Lightning lost for the first time in regulation at home (4-1-2).
In an explosive matchup featuring three No. 1 overall draft picks — Chicago’s Bedard and Taylor Hall along with Tampa Bay’s Stamkos — Cirelli won a draw in the left circle and ripped in a power-play goal at 3:20 of the first period.
Just 82 seconds later, Bedard fought his way to the front and batted in a pass from Kurashev.
After Kucherov slid in his team-high 11th goal off Tanner Jeannot’s wide shot at 12:31 of the first, the Blackhawks scored twice in a 55-second span for their first lead late in the opening period.
In his 12th game, Korchinski fired a long shot that caromed off the right skate of Tampa Bay defenseman Darren Raddysh at 16:43 to make it 2-2.
Bedard then flipped a pass on an odd-man rush to Johnson for the lead at 17:38.
Bedard finished the wild frame by backhanding a shot that Cirelli inadvertently put into his own net during a collision with Johansson, tallying his team-high seventh goal at 19:52.
The North Vancouver, British Columbia, native was at it again in the second, helping on Perry’s power-play marker at 2:12 for a 5-2 advantage.
With Johansson off the ice for the extra skater in the third, Stamkos capped the scoring with 2:10 remaining.
–Field Level Media