ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Mason McTavish became the youngest player in Anaheim history to score a goal as the Ducks opened the season with a 4-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets on Wednesday night.
The 18-year-old McTavish — the third overall pick in this year’s NHL draft — put in a loose puck 13:20 into the first period to give Anaheim a 2-0 lead. Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck made a pad save on a shot by Isac Lundestrom, but McTavish gathered in the rebound.
Officials originally ruled no goal because the whistle had blown, but replay overturned it as the culmination of a continuous play where the result was unaffected by the whistle.
At 18 years, 256 days old, McTavish surpassed the previous franchise mark set by Oleg Tverdovsky (18 years, 259 days) on Feb. 1, 1995, at Dallas. McTavish is the second-youngest player to score within 15 minutes of his NHL debut in more than 25 years (Columbus’ Nikita Filatov did it on Oct. 17, 2008, vs. Nashville) and the sixth-youngest in NHL history.
McTavish also had an assist on Adam Henrique’s power-play goal during the second period that extended the Ducks’ lead to 3-1.
Kevin Shattenkirk and Rickard Rakell also scored for Anaheim, which has won four of its last five season openers. Lundestrom and Jakob Silfverberg both had two assists, and John Gibson made 33 saves,
Kyle Connor scored Winnipeg’s goal with a one-timer from the right faceoff circle less than four minutes into the second. Hellebuyck stopped 18 shots.
Shattenkirk scored Anaheim’s first goal of the season with a wrist shot from the right wing near the boards that Hellebuyck was unable to see after being screened. It was Anaheim’s first shot on goal after the Jets took the first seven.
Rakell’s redirect of Jamie Drysdale’s shot from the point six minutes into the third period marked the first time in 19 months the Ducks scored twice on the power play in regulation. Anaheim had the league’s worst special teams last season and had only one game when it scored two goals with the man advantage. That second score, though, was in overtime against Colorado.
NOTES: McTavish became the third Anaheim player to make his debut in the season opener in his draft year, following Cam Fowler (2010-11) and Chad Kilger (1994-95). … Winnipeg C Mark Scheifele served the final game of a four-game suspension he received in the playoffs last season for his hit on Montreal’s Jake Evans.
Jets: Continue their season-opening, three-game road trip Saturday against the San Jose Sharks.
Ducks: Host the Minnesota Wild on Friday night.
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