NHL Game Summary - Boston at Toronto
(Monday, October 24th)
Final Score: Toronto 5, Boston 4 (SO)
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Eric Lindros scored the lone shootout goal, while Ed Belfour stopped 49 shots in Toronto's 5-4 victory over the Boston Bruins at Air Canada Centre.
Belfour was on top of his game all night, turning aside 13-of-14 shots in the third period and coming up big during a two-man advantage late in regulation, as the Maple Leafs won for the fifth time in their last six games.
Tie Domi, Bryan McCabe, Alexander Khavanov and Alexei Ponikarovsky had goals for the Maple Leafs.
Brad Boyes, Patrick Leahy, Ian Moran and Glen Murray all scored for the Bruins, who participated in their first shootout. Boston, which failed to score on 10 power-play opportunities, has lost four of its last five contests.
"It was great penalty killing," Toronto head coach Pat Quinn said. "Eddie got good at the right time. Clark Wilm and the defensemen did a great job, and we got something maybe we shouldn't have."
Andrew Raycroft stopped 28 shots for the Bruins, but allowed Lindros' goal in the shootout.
"Our power play has been better lately, but this one was disappointing," Boston head coach Mike Sullivan said. "When you get chances, a 5-on-3, and then a 5-on-4 in overtime, you expect to win a hockey game, and we're disappointed."
The Bruins have compiled 100 shots on goal in their last two games following a 6-3 victory over Pittsburgh Saturday night.
Ponikarovsky scored shorthanded on a rebound from in the crease with 4:37 left in regulation to tie the game, and the Maple Leafs killed off three power play chances in the third, with one stretching into overtime following a double-minor high-sticking call on Alexander Steen.
Belfour stopped six shots in overtime and then denied Murray on the first shootout attempt. Lindros then beat Raycroft with a backhand just inside the left post.
Joe Thornton then clanked a shot off the right post for Boston, but Raycroft stopped Jason Allison at the other end. Patrice Bergeron failed on Boston's last chance, as his backhand shot hit the side of the net.
Boyes was stopped on a great save by Belfour with 16 minutes left in the second period, but wouldn't be denied on the go-ahead tally at 3:05 of the third. Lindros pushed the puck back into his own end, but Belfour illegally left his crease to play the puck to the left of the net. Boyes stole it off the goaltender's stick, and then hit the post with his initial attempt before poking in the rebound.
"It wasn't a lot of fun out there tonight," Belfour said. "The new rules played a part in my poor performance. When I was playing the puck I had some brain cramps. A couple of goals I shouldn't have let in."
Despite having Tomas Kaberle in the penalty box for cross checking, the Leafs scored the equalizer. Ponikarovsky and Matthew Stajan skated in on a 2-on-1 break. Raycroft stopped Stajan's shot from the right circle, but the puck popped into the air and Ponikarovsky scored on the rebound from in the crease.
The Leafs were whistled for six penalties in the third period, including the double-minor on Steen, who got his stick in the face of Bergeron with 49 seconds left in regulation. Ken Klee had gone to the penalty box with 2:10 left in regulation for hooking, but Belfour made several stops, including one on a wrist shot by Brian Leetch from the left circle with 20.1 seconds left in the third.
Wilm had a shorthanded breakaway opportunity in the opening minute of OT, but Thornton poke-checked the puck away. Belfour saved a one-timer attempt from Murray and then stopped Sergei Samsonov on a shot from the slot to set up the shootout.
Domi and McCabe scored 46 seconds apart in the first period, with McCabe's coming on the power play, as Toronto led, 2-0.
Boston rebounded with three unanswered goals. Leahy and Moran scored 35 seconds apart early in the second.
Belfour made an incredible sprawling stick save on Boyes just over four minutes into the second and Boston went in front 3-2 on Murray's wrister from the left circle with 8:56 left in the middle stanza.
Khavanov tied the game with a power-play goal at 16:12 of the second.
Maple Leafs forward Mats Sundin, who suffered a fractured orbital bone in his club's season opener, was examined Monday and it was determined he would not need surgery. A time frame on Sundin's return still has not been set, but the team announced Monday that his vision is improving and he will continue to be examined. It is believed he could miss as much as six weeks of action...Toronto was 2-for-4 on the power play...The last time the Leafs gave up at least 50 shots in a regular season game was January 4, 2003 at home against New Jersey (51)...The last time the Bruins had 50-plus shots was at home versus San Jose (52) on November 6, 2003...Lindros has a six-game point streak...McCabe is tied with the Rangers' Jaromir Jagr for most points this season (15)...This was Toronto's third shootout of the season. The Leafs lost to Ottawa in the other two.
10/24 23:18:11 ET