Share this article

print logo


CHICAGO -- Rookie goalie Mika Noronen made 24 saves and the Buffalo Sabres took advantage of numerous Chicago penalties for a 3-0 NHL preseason victory over the Blackhawks Sunday night at the United Center.

Stu Barnes and Denis Hamel scored power-play goals and Norm Milley scored at even strength for the Sabres (2-0). Buffalo and Chicago will meet Wednesday in HSBC Arena.

In all, the Sabres had 14 power-play opportunities and put 26 shots on net. Chicago was 0 for 6 with the man-advantage.

"We're terrible in discipline," lamented new Hawks coach Alpho Suhonen. "We can't blame the referees (Kevin Pollock and Paul Stewart). The league made it very clear before the season -- slashing is out. We had to learn the hard way."

Noronen, the 21-year-old former No. 1 draft pick from Finland, had a busy opening period as Buffalo was outshot, 12-9. The period was marred by 10 penalties and a fight between Aaron Downey of the Blackhawks and Eric Bolton, who played at Rochester last season.

Barnes scored with assists from Vaclav Varada and Jason Holland at 14:57 with Buffalo on a five-on-three power play.

The second period saw more penalties and another Buffalo goal -- Milley scoring on a deflection from in front with assists by Maxim Afinogenov and Richard Smehlik at 13:13 -- but Chicago had only one shot on net.

Noronen completed the shutout with 11 saves in the third period. Hamel, positioned in front of the net, deflected a Richard Smehlik shot from the point past Chicago goalie Jocelyn Thibault for the only goal of the period.

Around the league

Defenseman Darryl Shannon signed a one-year, $700,000 deal with the Montreal Canadiens. Shannon, 32, had six goals and 21 assists in 76 games last season with Atlanta and Calgary, where he earned $1 million.

"He's an offensive defenseman, a good skater with a good first pass," Montreal General Manager Rejean Houle said of Shannon, who played three seasons with the Sabres.

Goalie Norm Maracle was one of 18 players cut by the Atlanta Thrashers and reassigned to Orlando of the IHL.

Maracle reported to training camp out of shape last year, underachieved in his first season and then reported to camp this year at 12 pounds over his target weight.

There are no comments - be the first to comment