NHL Game Summary - Florida at Toronto
(Tuesday, April 11th)
Final Score: Toronto 6, Florida 5 (OT)
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Mats Sundin posted four goals and a pair of assists for his seventh career hat trick while Tomas Kaberle scored the game-winner with 11 seconds left in overtime, as Toronto beat Florida, 6-5, at Air Canada Centre.
Nik Antropov notched a goal and an assist for the Maple Leafs, who won their second straight game. Kyle Wellwood and Bryan McCabe recorded three assists apiece. Jean-Sebastien Aubin stopped 21 shots.
Joe Nieuwendyk posted his 14th career hat-trick for the Panthers, who have dropped four of five. Olli Jokinen and Jay Bouwmeester also scored while Nathan Horton added a pair of assists. Jamie McLennan made 47 saves in the loss.
Toronto, with 84 points, is five behind the eighth-place Tampa Bay Lightning with four to play in the Eastern Conference playoff race. They are in danger of a post-season absence for the first time since 1997-98.
"Sometimes things just go right," Sundin said. "It was just one of those nights. We kept coming back and didn't give up. We're still alive."
With Horton in the penalty box for a holding penalty at 3:52, Sundin worked his way over to the left circle and passed to Kaberle who scored a one- timer from the faceoff circle to win the game.
"He's [Sundin] always been our captain on the ice and off," Kaberle said. "He made a great pass to set up our winner."
Jokinen scored an unassisted slap shot approaching the slot on a 2-on-1 break at 7:29, and Nieuwendyk scored a snap shot one-timer from the right circle just 34 seconds later for an early 2-0 Florida lead.
Sundin scored a slap shot from the left circle off a rebound on the power play at the 17:27 mark. He got his second straight goal off a pass from Wellwood, who slid it in front to Sundin, who was waiting just in front of the crease and fired a wrister glove side just 49 seconds into the second period to tie the game at two.
Nieuwendyk notched his second goal on a give-and-go with Gary Roberts from the right circle four minutes into the second period, but Antropov scored on a 5- on-3 power play with a slap shot from the left circle at the 18:08 mark to tie the game at three.
Nieuwendyk regained the lead for Florida when he took a break-away pass flicked from Sean Hill and beat Toronto defenseman Ian White 1:07 into the third period.
Sundin scored his fourth goal from the slot on a one-timer as he took a pass from Antropov out of the left corner.
Bouwmeester scored a slap shot at 16:37 to send the game into overtime.
Toronto outshot Florida 53-26, posting a season high for shots-on-goal. The last time it notched more than 50 was on December 10, 1997 against the Avalanche in the Maple Leaf Gardens.
Toronto will visit the NY Islanders on Thursday, and the Panthers will visit Ottawa on Thursday.
Antropov's goal tied the Leafs season-high for shots on goal with eight...In the last two games, Toronto has 10 power play goals, going 5-for-9 in this game and 5-for-8 in Philadelphia on Saturday...Since the Olympics, Sundin has 14 goals and 12 assists with a nine-game point streak. He is the sixth player in the NHL this season to have a four-goal game...Toronto is 4-0 against Florida this season and has won five straight meetings overall... The Panthers have lost in four straight trips to Toronto.
04/12 00:06:47 ET