NHL Game Summary - Montreal at Toronto
(Saturday, February 21st)
Final Score: Toronto 5, Montreal 4
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Mats Sundin scored late in the third period to help Toronto hang on for a 5-4 win over Montreal at Air Canada Centre.
Sundin, Tom Fitzgerald and Matthew Stajan all finished with a goal and an assist for the Maple Leafs, who posted their second straight victory despite being outscored 3-1 in the final period.
Pierre Dagenais, Steve Begin, Michael Ryder and Francis Bouillon scored for the Canadiens, who lost for the fifth time in six games.
Nik Antropov and Joe Nieuwendyk also scored for Toronto, which built a 4-0 lead but needed Sundin's 22nd goal of the season to keep a two-goal cushion late in the third.
With his team clinging to a 4-3 edge, Sundin gave the Maple Leafs a 5-3 lead by beating Jose Theodore with 2:46 remaining.
Ryder got Montreal within 5-4 with 50 seconds left, but the team couldn't force overtime against Mikael Tellqvist, who finished with 27 saves.
"It's hard to rate this performance," Tellqvist said. "I felt comfortable the first two periods, then I let a bad goal in and after that they got on a roll."
Toronto posted three first-period goals. Antropov opened the scoring at 5:19, redirecting a shot by Alexei Ponikarovsky into the net.
Fitzgerald posted his seventh goal of the season with 9:04 left in the first. He beat Mathieu Garon with a wrist shot from between the circles.
Stajan's 12th goal of the season, with 2:23 left in the period put the team ahead 3-0.
Garon, Montreal's starting goaltender, left the game after stopping just eight shots. Theodore finished with 12 saves.
The Maple Leafs led 4-0 midway through the second period on Nieuwendyk's power-play tally.
Dagenais brought Montreal within 4-1 with his one-timer from the left faceoff circle with 4:40 remaining in the second.
The Canadiens scored the initial two goals in the third period to get within 4-3. Begin notched his sixth goal at 3:07 of the third, and Bouillon converted on a slap shot from the left wing 7:35 later.
Sundin leads the NHL with nine game-winning goals and 31 third-period points for Toronto, which has won four straight in the series...Jan Bulis and Mike Ribeiro both posted two assists for the Canadiens....Bouillon registered his first goal in 55 games...Garon made his first career start against the Maple Leafs...Stajan has seven points (4 goals, 3 assists) in his last five games for Toronto.
02/22 02:20:54 ET