With Miles Wood and Pavel Zacha each notching two goals and Brian Gibbons scoring while killing off a two-man disadvantage, the Devils defeated the Maple Leafs 6-3 on Wednesday night in a battle of previously unbeaten teams.
"Auston was determined, he was playing head to head against Kane all night, did a real nice job", said Leafs coach Mike Babcock. "There's a lot of lessons to be learned from this game even though we won it". Carrick has been out the last two games with an unspecified upper body injury, but has been participating in practices. "I think it's a confidence-builder". The Maple Leafs won two of the three meetings a year ago and the total went over in all three meetings. The Devils are coming off a season when they failed to reach the playoffs.
It seemed like only a matter of time before the dam broke for the Maple Leafs. "As the game went on we got better and better and that's the way you want to play". And that's exactly what I expected.
No. 1 overall pick Nico Hischier was between the two Swedes on the Devils' second line.
"They communicate very well with each other", Hynes said. "They're going find ways and beat you one-on-one sometimes". The harder the games feel, the more you're going to dip into your energy levels.
"I thought we didn't panic too much". When there were opportunities for me to see it, the guys let me see it. "They've got tough forwards that can skate".
The Maple Leafs took the lead at 8:33 of the first period when van Riemsdyk scored his third goal of the season from the side of the net during a power play.
New Jersey finished 27th in the league last season, some 25 points behind Toronto.
Wood scored his second goal of the season 1:38 later after splitting the defense.
"I've been struggling a bit with some unfortunate bounces", Andersen said.
Which means van Riemsdyk is spending a lot of time sitting at his locker being asked about his contract status by the Toronto media. Jesper Bratt made the pass from the end boards.
The 19-year-old Swede, taken in the sixth round (162nd overall) in 2016, is the first player in franchise history (and one of just five NHLers in the past 17 seasons) to notch five points (three goals, two assists) in his first two National Hockey League games. He played on the penalty kill instead.
"That's a big one", Hynes said.
The Capitals' Alex Ovechkin scored his NHL-leading eighth goal of the season.
Matthews scored the overtime victor, breaking down the right side of the ice on a two-on-one rush and firing a ideal wrist shot over the shoulder of back-up goalie Anton Forsberg to give the Maple Leafs a 4-3 come-from-behind victory over the Chicago Blackhawks.
Stafford played 6:06 during the the first period on Saturday, but he was absent from the ice and the bench for the rest of the game.
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