Gardiner scores his first of the season
BY: Jeff Schneberk
In yet another hockey game that easily could have gone either way, and where Leaf goaltending faced nearly 50 shots, they won yet again; they are one of only three teams in the league to win games when facing upwards of 50 shots.
“It seems we work hard for 40 minutes, and establish the kind of game we want to play, then we start taking penalties that change the momentum and we son’t deem to get it back. Tonight, they scored two power play goals that we should have had the coverage on… but we won the hockey game, no matter how you get the points, we are going to take them.”
For the first time in recent memory, Leafs shut out during the shoot out; their first two skaters roofed it (James van Riemsdyk and Mason Raymond) while James Reimer shut the door on both Erik Karlsson and Erik Condra.
During regulation, Reimer received goal support from JVR, Phil Kessel and Jake Gardiner scored his first goal of the 2013-14 season and it was a beauty.
Hopefully defenceman Jake Gardiner will silence those idiots out there that think he should be traded. This is the kind of thing that most blueliners under the age of 25 can’t do (watch the video below). This is the closest thing to a coast-to-coast goal even though it happened in the offensive zone only; Gardiner made his way from the far point, skated to the near point, skated around two guys, cut towards the middle and roofed it…check the celly…
Carlyle continues to face stupid reporter questions about the decision to play Reimer or Jonathan Bernier on any given night.
“Well we have to put somebody in net,” he replied.
Ottawa got goals from former Leaf Clarke MacArthur, Erik Condra and Erik Karlsson. Craig Anderson made 28 saves, and pretty much eliminated himself from any talk regarding playing for the USA Olympic team in February.
The Sens scored twice in the third period to rebound from a 3-1 deficit.
Senators forward Zack Smith would just as soon forget everything related to the Leafs’ second goal, starting when he was knocked down just inside the Toronto blueline and turned the puck over.
Van Riemsdyk was the initial recipient of the turnover as he gained control of the loose puck and started up ice on a 2-on-1 that was eventually turned into a goal by Kessel at 3:05 of the second period.
The bad news didn’t end there for Smith. Following the goal, thinking there should have been a penalty on the play, he was given a two-minute unsportsmanlike conduct penalty along with a 10-minute misconduct.
“What we think doesn’t matter. Only when the guy with the orange armbands puts his hand up in the air and calls it a penalty, that’s the only time it’s a penalty,” Senators coach Paul MacLean said.
“We can all argue and say (Nazem Kadri) had his stick in between (Smith’s) legs and he up falling down and they ended up with a 2-on-1 going the other way, but the guy with the orange armbands didn’t put his arm up so it’s not a penalty, it’s a good defensive play.”
Despite the loss, Senators captain Jason Spezza feels the club has performed well in their past half dozen games, even if the results are not as positive as they would like having won just twice in those six games.
“This has probably been our best six block game of the season with our effort, so you’d like to think that first comes the process and then comes the result,” Spezza said.
Toronto continues to get point production from their top players. JVR’s point streak four goals, five assists and nine points in the last six games
Kessel has four goals, four assists and eight points in the last six games
Kessel is on six game point streak
Notes: The game was the second of four meetings between the teams this season. Toronto won the first meeting 5-4 in a shootout on Oct. 5 at the Air Canada CentreaSenators forwards Bobby Ryan and Milan Michalek, who turned 29 Saturday, haven’t scored in eight games,,,Forward Matt Kassian was in the lineup for the first time in the Senators’ last 11 gamesaThe Maple Leafs have the third youngest roster in the NHL with an average age of 26.8 yearsaPaul Ranger and Morgan Rielly were scratches for the Leafs while Eric Gryba and Cory Conacher were scratches for the SenatorsaThe Leafs have lost 80 man games to injury this season compared to just 15 for the Senators.–
Van Riemsdyk led all skaters last night compiling three points, Jason Spezza was next with two assists, Mika Zibanejad also had two assists and Kessel had a goal and assist.
Leafs win on the road for the first time since Nov. 30 in Calgary.
To that end, Collins told the Sun that more than 200,000 tickets have already been sold for Michigan’s hockey love-in that runs from Dec. 27-Jan 1, a lineup that includes the Great Lakes Invitational NCAA tournament featuring Michigan, Michigan State, Michigan Tech and Western Michigan; an OHL doubleheader involving Windsor, Saginaw, London and Plymouth; an AHL clash between the Toronto Marlies and Grand Rapids; two games between Red Wings and Leafs alumni: and, finally, the Winter Classic game between the Red Wings and Maple Leafs.
In the second game of the Hockey Night in Canada doubleheader, Calgary led 1-0 for almost the entire game, before Edmonton tied it with 10.2 seconds left in the third, before Calgary got it back in overtime to win, 2-1.
Tonight is a rematch of the first round of last year’s Stanley Cup playoffs as the Bruins come to town for a very rare Sunday-night thriller.