NHL Game Summary - Toronto at Boston
(Thursday, November 9th)
Final Score: Toronto 6, Boston 4
Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Nik Antropov had two goals and an assist to lead the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 6-4 victory over the Boston Bruins at TD Banknorth Garden.
Alexei Ponikarovsky had a goal and two assists and Bryan McCabe and Michael Peca each added a goal and an assist for the Maple Leafs, who have won three straight and six of their last seven contests.
Andrew Raycroft, playing against his former team for the first time, stopped 28 shots before leaving in the second period with an injury. He was later reported as suffering from a groin strain and is day-to-day. Jean-Sebastien Aubin took over and gave up two goals on seven shots in the third period.
"The script was going to be too good to be true," said Raycroft. "Of course, something has to happen at some point to me. Of course, it would have been nice to finish that. It was a fun first period for me."
The Leafs found out on Wednesday that they will be without captain Mats Sundin for at least the next three weeks. He is sidelined with a torn ligament in his right elbow. Sundin leads the team with 11 assists and 19 points.
Marco Sturm, Marc Savard, P.J. Axelsson and Wayne Primeau each had a goal for the Bruins, who have lost two straight and three of their last four games.
"We outshot them in the first period so some goals here and there maybe shouldn't have gone in and it's a different hockey game," said Savard.
Boston played well in the offensive end in the first and outshot Toronto, 19-10, but it was the Maple Leafs who scored in the period, three times, to take a 3-0 lead after 20 minutes of play.
On the power play, Jeff O'Neill fought off a checker at the left side and threw a blind, one-handed pass to the right side, where Darcy Tucker banged it into the net just 2:18 in.
Peca netted his second goal of the campaign when he redirected a pass from Bates Battaglia past Thomas with 2:57 left in the period.
In the last minute of the period, Antropov threw a shot on net from the right point that McCabe redirected from in front for his third goal of the season.
Brian Finley replaced Thomas in net to start the second period. Thomas finished the game with seven saves.
The goaltending change didn't help much as Toronto continued the onslaught in the second and took a 4-0 lead when Antropov poked in a rebound 4:04 into the middle stanza.
Boston finally got on the board when Brad Boyes skated the puck into the Boston zone and from the left boards lifted a pass over the stick of a defender onto the stick of Sturm, who redirected the puck in mid-air past Raycroft at the 5:40 mark of the second.
Toronto, though, got the goal back less than a minute later when a turnover behind the Boston net resulted in Kyle Wellwood getting the puck, firing a shot on net and Ponikarovsky poking in the rebound for a 5-1 lead.
Boston made it a 5-2 game when Savard skated in on the breakaway, deked to the backhand, and shelved the puck over the left shoulder of Raycroft with 7:53 left in the second.
Raycroft came out of the game with about five minutes to play in the second period when he grabbed the top of his left knee and fell to the ice after making a pad save. Aubin assumed netminding duties after Raycroft skated off the ice.
On the power play Boston cut its deficit to 5-3 when Paul Mara's high slot shot went wide of the net, bounced off the back boards back to the right side and Axelsson banged in the shot just 6:01 into the third.
The Bruins again used the power play to make it a 5-4 game. A turnover behind the net resulted in Boyes getting the puck at the left circle. He threw a pass to the low slot, where Primeau redirected it between the pads of Aubin with 6:29 to play.
Antropov's empty-net goal with 11 seconds to play sealed the victory for Toronto.
The Bruins host Ottawa on Saturday...The Maple Leafs return home to host the Canadiens...Toronto and Boston split eight games last season...Finley stopped 24 shots...Boyes had two assists in the game...Toronto went 1-for-6 on the power play while Boston scored on two of its five man advantages.
11/09 22:44:38 ET