Toronto ended its road trip on a high-profile Friday night with 4 games, beating the Anaheim Ducks 2-1 in overtime and sweeping the team's annual California swing for the first time in over two decades. Morgan Rielly had won the game winner for Toronto, while Garret Sparks scored a career high of 38 in net. The Leafs are now in the NHL standings at 1
Rielly completes the round
Toronto had not won a California road trip 3-0 since December 1995 Since then they were even able They did so until they won the first two games of the trip in Los Angeles and then San Jose before arriving in Anaheim on Friday.
The game drew 1-1 after sixty minutes, after Patrick Marleau scored the second goal in the first leg and Pontus Aberg and Toronto came in overtime for the third extra time this time This season, in which Morgan Rielly buried his ninth-goal goal of a two-on-one game by Mitch Marner to seal Toronto's third win. They are also 3-0 in extra time this season.
With the marker, Rielly has extended his points to five games (three goals, four assists), leading all NHL defenders in points (25) and goals (9). Rielly ended his night with four shots on goal in a 23:16 leading team time on ice.
The Friday's win brought Toronto to the top of the NHL ranking after 20 games, one point ahead of Tampa Bay and Nashville (who each played 19 games).
Less is More for Sparks
After a weak start for the Leafs in their 5-1 defeat to the Boston Bruins last Saturday, the replacement goalkeeper with Garret Sparks aspired to something less, and trust his instincts a little more on his next outing. That came in Anaheim on Toronto's second night for the third time this season, a game that Mike Babcock always calls his second network operator. Sparks finally reached his goal (with some help from his teammates) to achieve the third win of the season in a career-high performance of 38, with a percentage of .974 savings.
Sparks did not have as many quality scoring opportunities in the first period that Ducks' goalkeeper did John Gibson not with Toronto, who scrutinized the game early on and 1-0 Ahead of Marleau's goal jumped. But when Anaheim found her legs, Sparks had to make some tough saves, including from close range on Marcus Pettersson late in the first period when the ducks exerted some pressure at the end of the Leaves.
The Duck Lines of Ryan Getzlaf Rickard Rakell and Pontus Aberg was the only constantly dangerous unit that Anaheim had offensively most of the night, eventually breaking as Aberg one Shot just below Sparks & # 39; Blocker continued to finish the game late in the second half (1-1).
In the third half, Sparks was besieged for the second half of the frame and needed help from his defenders to control the chaos. On two occasions in which Ondrej Kase and Rakell had open networks, he was in the air, and it occurred Jake Gardiner and Nikita Zaitsev Block the shot and keep the sheets tied. Babcock said after the game that Friday was Gardiner's best game of the season, finishing 57 percent of possession, three blocked shots, three shots on target and a 1-1 scoring at 23:00 against ice.
Recently, five more games before the 1,600th of his career, Patrick Marleau has reached countless milestones to date, including another minor in Friday's competition. At the beginning of the first hour, Marleau was in the right place at the right time to earn a distraction goal from John Gibson and put the Leafs 1-0 down. It was the 539th goal of Marleau's 21-season NHL career that left Keith Tkachuk behind in the league's All-Time Goals list, having finished 32nd.
His goal in Anaheim was not the only contribution Marleau has made to the score lately. He silently scored six points (two goals, four assists) in the seven competitions that led to the match on Friday, and with Linemate Kasperi Kapanen he showed a burgeoning chemistry that he won on Thursday at 5 : 3 Victory over San Jose and with whom he still had some chances in Anaheim.
Marleau is the oldest member of the Leafs at the age of 39, but with his speed he can still take an opponent with him and keep up with Toronto's young core while operating on both ends of the ice. He finished the game on Friday with two strokes in 17:51 time on ice.
Stability Required for Special Teams
The seasonal trend that the powerplay quickly went from hot to cold was decided as cool with the extra man in Anaheim.
The Leafs Second Unit of Tyler Ennis Josh Leivo Kasperi Kapanen Andreas Johnsson and Jake Gardiner used their time to make some sound Generating opportunities, mainly from Ennis, who tried backdoor and hash marks to get past Gibson, unsuccessfully in Toronto's first power play.
But Leafs Man's second chance was completely anemic. Anaheim controlled the puck almost the entire two-minute power play time and penetrated several times in the leafs end. Toronto finished the extra attacker's game 0-2.
With just two games against the LA Kings, the Leafs' powerplay was stronger than ever before, going 3-6 Was 28, and now they are 0 to 5.
The penalty shoot-out of the Leafs is the least punished team in the NHL. The Leafs' penalty shoot-out may not look good, but they once worked against the Ducks in the third round and held a strong powerplay offer from Anaheim Bay to finish 1-1.
In the first weeks of the season, the first goal in a game was far from Toronto. They only made it three times in the first ten games but won every time. Since the end of October, the Leafs have done a better job in the opening phase, and the entry into the game on Friday had been in the first two games on the board and was in the round of the season with 8: 0th This series sat down with Marleau's goal against the Ducks continued and showed how the Leafs had focused on using their speed early on against opponents and being more aggressive against the net.
Blue and White Trending
Tracking Leafs' trends throughout the season
The Leafs are now 8-0 in this season after 20 minutes and lead after 20 minutes.
Toronto hits home on the Columbus Blue Jackets Monday.