No Nathan MacKinnon. No Jared Bednar.
No problem for the Colorado Avalanche.
Colorado opened the regular season with a 4-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks Wednesday at Ball Arena in Denver.
Despite missing their star forward (MacKinnon) and head coach (Bednar), the Avs got plenty of contributions from a couple of newcomers.
Defenseman Jack Johnson scored Colorado's first goal of the season. Goalie Darcy Kuemper saved 32 of 34 shots and was especially good in the second period.
Defenseman Bowen Byrum scored his first NHL goal and gave the Avs a 3-0 lead at 9:34 of the first period.
Assistants Ray Bennett and Nolan Pratt handled coaching duties in Bednar's absence.
The Avalanche will host the St. Louis Blues on Saturday, October 16. The Avs will honor late President/G Pierre Lacroix before the game.