TORONTO — Jordie Benn scored the game-winning goal in his Maple Leafs debut as Toronto came back from an early 2-0 deficit to defeat the Vancouver Canucks 3-2 on Saturday. Auston Matthews and Pierre Engvall scored Toronto’s other goals (8-5-3).
TORONTO — Jordie Benn scored the game-winning goal in his Maple Leafs debut as Toronto came back from an early 2-0 deficit to defeat the Vancouver Canucks 3-2 on Saturday.
Auston Matthews and Pierre Engvall scored Toronto’s other goals (8-5-3).
Erik Kallgren made 28 saves in his second start in as many nights after the Leafs lost 4-2 at home to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday.
Bo Horvat and JT Miller replied for Vancouver (4-8-3). Spencer Martin stopped 32 shots for the struggling Canucks, who lost their sixth multi-goal lead of the season.
Down by that margin after a first period where they couldn’t get out of second gear, the Leafs halved the visitors’ lead when Matthews ripped his seventh of the campaign upstairs on a power play 1:46 after the restart.
Engvall then added his second on a scramble to tie it 2-2 at 6:27 as Toronto kept the pressure on before Benn, who suffered a groin injury in preseason and entered the TJ lineup Ill Brodie, pinched from his defensive position to score against his old team at 10:01.
Brock Boeser hit the post for Vancouver on a power play early in the third, and Kallgren landed a shot from Andrei Kuzmenko later in the period on a turnover, but the Canucks couldn’t find a third. to force the extension.
Vancouver opened the scoring at 3:41 of the first period when Horvat tipped his 13th against Kallgren, who played his eighth appearance in 2022-23 with Matt Murray (groin/abductor) and Ilya Samsonov (knee) put out ‘difference. Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe said before the game that Murray was targeting Pittsburgh on Tuesday for his comeback.
Miller then gave the visitors a 2-0 power play lead at 12:11 when he fired his eighth after a Kallgren screen before Toronto responded with a 10-second burst to take the lead.
Leafs great Borje Salming was honored for a second straight night following Friday’s emotional pre-game ceremony ahead of the NHL Hall of Fame game.
Diagnosed with ALS – also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease – in August, the 71-year-old received another raucous welcome with his family by his side as a video chronicling his career played on the board on board.
The Leafs pitched their six Swedish players as part of the tribute, with Leafs winger William Nylander and Canucks defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson taking part in the ceremonial face-off.
BRUCE ON BORJE
Canucks head coach Bruce Boudreau played seven seasons with the Leafs when Salming was at his best.
“He could play 28 minutes a night or 30 minutes a night,” Boudreau said after practice Saturday morning. “And the next night he did the same thing. He was in amazing (shape).”
Boudreau recalled the night he scored his only NHL hat trick in December 1977. Salming assisted on all three goals and set up two more on a five-point night.
“An incredible player,” Boudreau added of his former roommate. “It’s hard to describe in today’s world what he would be like. Or compare him to someone today.”
Leafs: Visit the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday.
Canucks: Visit the Boston Bruins on Sunday.
This report from The Canadian Press was first published on November 12, 2022.
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Joshua Clipperton, The Canadian Press