A series opener that saw a lot of penalties also saw a lot of Bern goals as the Bears overwhelmed Munich on Wednesday. Bern outshot the Foxes 48-20 in the game and 17-5 in the first period, but strangely, the home team trailed Munich 1-0 after 20 minutes thanks to Jim Slater’s shorthanded goal nearly 16 minutes into the contest. But that was the only goal Mike Smith was to give up in the whole game. Meanwhile, the Bear offense got revved up in the second period, a frame that featured another lopsided shot total in favor of Bern (20-5). Veteran forward Ray Whitney tied the game with his 3rd goal of the post season, and Henrik Zetterberg put the Swiss team in front 2-1 with his 8th of the playoffs. Then in the first minute of third period, Brent Seabrook scored to put Bern up by 2 and with Munich pressing for the equalizer, Bern was able to pour in three more goals. Andy McDonald and Jason Spezza each had three points and 6 shots to lead all skaters in both categories. Saku Koivu and Toni Lydman had OK games for the Foxes, who will need more firepower when the two teams meet again in two days. A crowd of 22,127 accounted for a one-game windfall of nearly $2 million for Bern.
Geneva 5, Bratislava 0
Kari Lehtonen turned back 24 Bratislava shots to vault Geneva into the lead of the second round playoff series between the Generals and Eagles. The Geneva offense, meanwhile, fired 34 shots at Craig Anderson and five different players beat him. Darren Helms’ rebound goal off a Greg Zanon point shot opened the scoring just 2:09 into the game and it ended up being the game-winning goal. Nicklas Lidstrom, Nick Foligno, Chris Kunitz and Ryan Malone also scored. Kunitz also added an assist and Mike Fisher notched two assists in the victory. Bratislava came out hitting and ended up doubling Geneva’s hit total 24-12, but they couldn’t get the puck in front of the Geneva net often enough to dent Lehtonen. David Desharnais of Geneva led all skaters with 6 shots on goal in 12 minutes of playing time, but he was unable to score a point. Four Geneva players were credited with 2 blocked shots.