MONTREAL (AP) – Rookie Phil Kessel assisted on two of Boston’s three power-play goals in the first period and Zdeno Chara had a goal and an assist in the Bruins’ 5-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday night in the preseason opener for both teams.

Marco Sturm had two goals and an assist, opening the scoring on a two-man advantage midway through the first, and Mark Mowers and newcomer Paul Mara added power-play goals for Boston in the first.

Chara, who left Ottawa as a free agent to sign a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the Bruins, assisted along with the 18-year-old Kessel on Sturm’s 5-on-3 goal. The 6-foot-9 all-star added his first goal in the second.

Canadiens captain Saku Koivu assisted on Michael Ryder’s power-play goal 1:32 into the second period. Koivu made his first appearance for Montreal since he sustained a serious injury to his left eye in Game 3 of the Canadiens’ first-round playoff series against Stanley Cup champion Carolina.

Guillaume Latendresse scored Montreal’s second goal in the third before Sturm restored Boston’s three-goal lead with his second goal of the game later in the period.

Boston’s Tim Thomas stopped 18 of 19 shots in the first two periods – including Latendresse’s penalty shot 40 seconds after Ryder’s goal to protect a 3-1 lead – before giving way to Brian Finley.

Montreal’s Cristobal Huet made 12 saves, allowing four goals before yielding to Carey Price midway through the second.

Both teams had new coaches as Dave Lewis won his Bruins debut over Guy Carbonneau, the Canadiens’ captain during their 24th and last Stanley Cup win in 1993.



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