Blackhawks Begin Stanley Cup Defense With 6-4 Victory

The Chicago Blackhawks began defense of their National Hockey League title with a 6-4 home win over the Washington Capitals.

Also last night in the first games of the regular season, the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Montreal Canadiens 4-3 and the Winnipeg Jets defeated the Edmonton Oilers 5-4.

Mikhail Grabovski scored two goals on power plays in the third period at United Center to give Washington a 4-3 lead before goals by Brandon Saad, Johnny Oduya and Marian Hossa secured the victory for Chicago.

The Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup for a second time in four seasons in June when they scored twice in the final 76 seconds of Game Six to beat the Boston Bruins 3-2.

The 2012 regular season was shortened to 48 games per team by a labor dispute between players and owners that yielded a 10-year collective bargaining agreement after a 117-day lockout.

(Corrects reference to third period in third paragraph.)
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