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Ducks Buffaloed in Helsinki as teams put their best Finns forward

Anaheim's Teemu Selanne, revered in Finland, is silenced by fellow countryman Ville Leino and the Sabres, who skate off with a 4-1 victory in their NHL opener.

October 07, 2011|By Lisa Dillman
  • Ducks forward Teemu Selnne throws pucks to spectators on Friday.
Ducks forward Teemu Selnne throws pucks to spectators on Friday. (Martti Kainulainen / Associated…)

Reporting from Calgary, Canada — The celebratory homecoming for one Finn could not have gone better or more smoothly.

Not only did he score a goal but his team emerged with a one-sided victory in its NHL opener Friday in Helsinki, Finland.

It was Ville Leino and the Buffalo Sabres doing the scoring and the winning, not national hero Teemu Selanne and the Ducks. Buffalo, behind three power-play goals, defeated the Ducks, 4-1, at Hartwall Arena. Thomas Vanek led the Sabres with two goals and an assist.

This was the arena with a big mural on the outside of Selanne, the favorite son of Finland, who, at age 41, was returning home to play an NHL regular-season game for the first time.

But the Ducks' big scoring threats, including Selanne, were silent, including a five-on-three advantage for 39 seconds in the third period. The lone Duck goal came from defenseman Nate Guenin, at 4:32 of the second period, to cut the Sabres' lead to 2-1.

It was set up by a nice win off the faceoff by center Maxime Macenauer. For Guenin, it was his first NHL goal and the first point for Macenauer.

Dillman reported from Calgary, Canada

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