ST. LOUIS — Sheldon Keefe figured his most dangerous forward was on the cusp of creating some damage. Auston Matthews backed up his coach’s words on Saturday night against the St. Louis Blues. With two goals, Matthews ended a five-game scoring drought, his longest of the season, as the Maple Leafs beat the defending Stanley […]Matthews ends drought, Hyman also provides a pair as Leafs beat Blues — Toronto Sun
OPINION: While there were any number of intriguing subplots to Saturday’s NHL matinee, the only relevant talking point was a 6-5 Canucks’ overtime win which, for the moment, has them above the playoff bar in the West with the cast from Braveheart in hot pursuitEd Willes: Canucks gain an edge on Sabres in tight showdown of ‘new hope’ squads — The Province
HEAD COACH SHELDON KEEFE
On earning a victory on the road tonight:
Well, we were able to score goals. Obviously, in that first period the puck fell in the net for us, so that was good. It wasn’t without some big saves – right away, right off the start by Freddie. Big saves early, puck fell in the net and then we were really good on special teams.
On Matthews getting back on the scoresheet:
It’s got to feel good for him. I didn’t think about it one second; full confidence it’s going to fall in for him. He’s too good a player for it not to. He’s getting to good a chance for it not to go in. It’s just the ebbs and flows of the season. A lot of little things I think he has been doing really well and gets rewarded for it today.
On the team’s play with the puck and play to retrieve it on defence:
I thought, at times, really good. And then, other times, not as good. I think there will be a lot of examples for us through this game with things we can do better. I thought the Colorado game was better for us in that regard, all the way through. We didn’t get rewarded offensively in the Colorado game. I thought some of the bounces that fell our way was us getting the reward for the last game a little bit. There are some things that we could have done better away from the puck and just managing the game when we had the lead, all those types of things. Playing against a team such as this, they really make it hard on you, you know they’re going to push back. I can see us handle that a little bit better than through the start of the second and the start of the third.
On the effect of having the team’s top scorers in the lineup together:
Well, it makes us a deeper team, it makes us a more dangerous team. It gives us the ability to move things around a little bit, it gives us the ability to have even more weapons on our first power play unit. It makes us a better team. Obviously, those are important people, they’re difference makers and when we have them all in the lineup, it gives us an advantage, for sure.
FREDERIK ANDERSEN (26 SAVES)
On tonight’s win:
We had a nice cushion, obviously we made the best of our chances early and we got to play with confidence a little bit better and keep them at bay for longer periods of time. I thought we had really good moments in the game and got rewarded on some of our chances.
On playing with a lead:
I mean, it’s easier to play with a lead, obviously. You’re not chasing anything. You’re trying to keep it simple, obviously keep pushing, but you don’t have to force anything down the middle and play more risky hockey. I think it’s good for us, it’s better to have the lead than not so I think it’s more confidence, more controllable hockey when you have the lead.
ZACH HYMAN (2 GOALS)
On what lead to his offensive contributions tonight:
Just good puck movement, I think. We got on them early in the first period. Mitch [Marner] made a great pass to me on the first goal and then Pierre [Engvall] made a great pass on the second, so, set up pretty good.
On why the penalty kill has been successful as of late:
I think we have confidence. I don’t think we were overly terrible before, but I think once you string a couple kills together you start to build confidence and then you start to roll. I think we’re on a bit of a roll here, so we have to keep going.
AUSTON MATTHEWS (2 GOALS)
On a complete effort from the full team tonight:
Yeah, obviously, defending Cup champs, it’s always tough coming into this building. Got off to a good start, Freddie make some big saves and just tried to roll all four lines throughout the game.
On if he felt the puck was following him around tonight:
A little bit, especially that second goal. It just kind of hit a couple bodies and ended up right there and bounced and just tried to chip it in. Had a couple other chances and, like I said the other day, just have to keep shooting the puck and hope it goes in.
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS (14-13-4 – 32 Points) vs.
ST. LOUIS BLUES (18-7-6 – 42 Points)
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 7, 2019
ON THE SCORESHEET
- Zach Hyman opened the scoring for the Maple Leafs at 2:50 of the first period and later scored the third Maple Leafs goal of the game while shorthanded at 9:12 of the first period. Tonight’s game is Hyman’s sixth career multi-goal game, as well as his first multi-goal and multi-point performance of 2019-20. He has goals (3) in two consecutive games. His second goal of the night is his first shorthanded goal and shorthanded point of the season. He has scored seven career shorthanded goals alongside one shorthanded assist.
- Auston Matthews scored the second Toronto goal of the night at 6:51 of the first period and later scored the fifth Maple Leafs goal of the night on the power play at 9:29 of the second period. He is tied for fifth in the NHL in goals (18) and is tied for fourth in the NHL in even-strength goals (13). Matthews has nine points (4 goals, 5 assists) in six games against Central Division opponents this season. Tonight’s game is his fourth multi-goal and 10th multi-point performance of 2019-20.
- Jason Spezza scored the fourth Toronto goal of the night on the power play at 12:57 of the first period. Spezza has eight points (3 goals, 5 assists) over his last nine games played. He has recorded 10 (4 goals, 6 assists) of his 12 points on the road this season. He has six points (2-4-6) in eight games against Western Conference opponents.
- Mitch Marner registered the lone assist on Hyman’s first goal in the first period and later had the lone assist on Matthews’ second period goal. Tonight’s game is his fourth multi-assist game of the season and fifth multi-point game of the season. Marner’s first period assist was his first point since returning from injury against Colorado on December 4. He has seven points (3-4-7) in seven road games this season. Twelve of his 16 assists have been primary assists this season.
- William Nylander had the lone assist on Matthews’ first period goal. Nylander has two points (1-1-2) in two games against the Blues this season. He has five points (3 goals, 2 assists) in six games against Central Division opponents.
- Pierre Engvall collected the lone assist on Hyman’s shorthanded goal in the first period. Engvall as three points (1 goal, 2 assists) in nine games since being recalled by the Maple Leafs on November 18. Two (1-1-2) of his three points have come while shorthanded.
- Morgan Rielly recorded the lone assist on Spezza’s first period goal. Rielly has 10 assists in 16 games on the road this season. He is tied for sixth among NHL defencemen in assists (18) and is tied for eighth among defencemen in points (4-18-22).
- Kasperi Kapanen picked up the secondary assist on Spezza’s first period goal. Kapanen has six points (2 goals, 4 assists) over his last seven games. He has 14 points (6-8-14) in 16 road games this season, which leads the Maple Leafs.
- Frederik Andersen stopped 26 shots to earn his 14th victory of the season.
SHOTS ON GOAL (5-on-5 in brackets)
|TORONTO||12 (7)||5 (3)||10 (10)||–||27 (20)|
|ST. LOUIS||8 (8)||11 (8)||9 (9)||–||28 (25)|
SHOT ATTEMPTS (5-on-5 in brackets)
|TORONTO||20 (12)||15 (12)||20 (20)||–||55 (44)|
|ST. LOUIS||14 (12)||25 (17)||15 (15)||–||54 (44)|
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
|Record on the Road||7-9-0 (16 Games)|
|All-Time Record vs. St. Louis||94-96-25-6 (221 Games)|
|All-Time Record vs. St. Louis on the Road:||34-63-14-1 (112 Games)|
|Record vs. Western Conference||7-4-0 (11 Games)|
|Record vs. Central Division||3-3-0 (6 Games)|
MAPLE LEAFS LEADERS
|Shot Attempts||9 (Matthews)|
|Faceoff Wins||6 (Kerfoot, Tavares)|
|Faceoff Win Percentage||57% (Matthews – 4 won, 3 lost)|
|Blocked Shots||2 (Ceci, Marner, Muzzin)|
|Power Play TOI||2:01 (Four players tied)|
|Shorthanded TOI||5:00 (Ceci)|
|5-on-5 Shot Attempt Percentage||71.4% (Tavares – 15 for, 6 against)|
|Lead after 1||6-2-1|
|Lead after 2||10-0-2|
|Score multiple power play goals||3-1-0|
|Do not allow a power play goal||9-4-0|
|Score a shorthanded goal||2-1-1|
|Outshot by opponent||6-9-3|
- The Maple Leafs went 4-for-4 on the penalty kill and 2-for-2 on the power play tonight.
- Toronto tied their season high for goals in a period in the first period of tonight’s game (4 – 4x).
- Tyson Barrie was on the ice for a team-high 19 Toronto shot attempts-for at 5-on-5 tonight. Barrie finished the game with a 5-on-5 shot attempt percentage of 57.6 percent (19 for, 14 against).
- Justin Holl started 20 percent of his 5-on-5 shifts in the offensive zone, which was the lowest mark among Toronto skaters.
- Zach Hyman was 3-for-5 (60%) on defensive zone draws.
- Tuesday, December 10, 10:00 p.m. at Vancouver Canucks (TSN4, TSN 1050)
- Thursday, December 12, 9:00 p.m. at Calgary Flames (TSN4, TSN 1050)
- Saturday, December 14, 7:00 p.m. at Edmonton Oilers (Sportsnet, FAN 590)
- Tuesday, December 17, 7:00 p.m. vs. Buffalo Sabres (TSN4, TSN 1050)
- Friday, December 20, 7:00 p.m. at New York Rangers (Sportsnet Ontario, FAN 590)
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 7, 2019
San Antonio: J. Kyrou (9) (D. Pouliot, M. Vecchione), T. Kaspick (3) (J. Dotchin, E. Polei)
Goaltender: V. Husso (14/17)
Toronto: K. Agostino (12) (R. Sandin, J. Bracco), K. Agostino (13) (J. Bracco, T. Gaudet), T. Kivihalme (2) (J. Lindgren, H. Elynuik)
Goaltender: K. Kaskisuo (28/30)
ON THE SCORESHEET
- Kenny Agostino scored at 12:07 of the first period and at 9:49 of the second period. This is his third multi-goal game and his sixth multi-point game of the season. Agostino has nine goals in his last 10 games. Agostino is tied for fifth overall in goals (13).
- Teemu Kivihalme scored at 3:13 of the third period. This is his second career AHL goal. His first was an empty-net goal against Manitoba on November 24. Kivihalme has six points (2 goals, 4 assists) through 20 games.
- Rasmus Sandin recorded the primary assist on Agostino’s first period goal. Sandin has three assists in his last four games. Sandin has 12 points (2 goals, 10 assists) through 15 games this season.
- Jeremy Bracco registered the secondary assist on Agostino’s first period goal and the primary assist on Agostino’s second period goal.These assists were Bracco’s 100th and 101st career AHL assists. Bracco is fourth overall in the league in assists (18).
- Tyler Gaudet had the secondary assist on Agostino’s second period goal.Gaudet has nine points (2 goals, 7 assists) through 21 games.
- Jesper Lindgren picked up the primary assist on Kivihalme’s third period goal. Lindgren has six points (1 goal, 5 assists) through 17 games.
- Hudson Elynuik recorded the secondary assist on Kivihalme’s third period goal. Elynuik has four points (1 goal, 3 assists) through 21 games this season.
- Kasimir Kaskisuo stopped 28 of the 30 shots he faced. Kaskisuo is now 9-1-1-0 on the season with a .925 Save Percentage and a 2.18 Goals Against Average.
- The Marlies are 11-1-0-0 at home this season, losing their only home game at Scotiabank Arena.
- The Toronto Maple Leafs announced on December 1 that Greg Moore was named head coach of the Toronto Marlies. He will join the Marlies on December 16.
- Assistant coaches Rob Davison and A.J. MacLean assumed duties behind the bench for tonight’s game against Rochester. Toronto is 6-2-0-0 under Davison and MacLean.
- Toronto was 1-for-1 on the penalty kill and was 0-for-4 on the power play. San Antonio’s power play is ranked second in the AHL (27.1% – 29/107).
- San Antonio had a 30-17 edge in shots in all situations. Mason Marchment led the Marlies with five shots on goal.
- The Marlies are 8-2-0-0 against Central Division opponents and are 1-0-0-0 against the San Antonio Rampage. Toronto last played San Antonio on January 11, 2015, winning 3-0.
REGULAR SEASON LEADERS
- Goals: K. Agostino (13)
- Assists: J. Bracco (18)
- Points: K. Agostino (22)
- PPG: E. Korshkov (4)
- Shots: K. Agostino (47)
- +/-: B. Harpur (+11)
- PIMS: G. Wilson (45)
- The Marlies are 6-1-1-0 when trailing after the first period and 4-2-0-1 when tied after the second period.
- Toronto is 9-3-1-1 when outshot by their opponent.
- The Marlies are 7-1-1-1 in Saturday games and are 2-1-0-0 in December.
CURRENT POINT STREAKS
- No current point streaks
- Kevin Gravel (illness) did not dress for today’s game against Utica.
- December 6: Recalled forward Pontus Aberg from loan by Toronto (NHL).
- December 6: Recalled defenceman Martin Marincin from loan by Toronto (NHL).
- December 6: Recalled forward Nic Petan from loan by Toronto (NHL).
- December 5: Reassigned forward Aaron Luchuk by Toronto (NHL) to Newfoundland (ECHL).
- December 4: Activated forward Mason Marchment from injured non-roster by Toronto (NHL) and loaned to Toronto (AHL).
ASSISTANT COACH A.J. MacLEAN
On today’s game and how Toronto played against San Antonio:
Overall pretty well. I don’t think we really played a full complete game. I think with a team like San Antonio, with how hard they work, they’re going to have their time and they did. I thought our guys did a really good job holding the fort. When they had their push, guys were blocking shots. The bench was alive. And if anything got through, Kas was massive in net for us again.
On what Mason Marchment’s return mean to the team:
A lot. Marchment’s a great player, he’s a big body, he can really shoot the puck. The more reps he gets and the more games he gets, he’s only going to be feeling better.
On the power play (0-for-1):
It was just okay. I thought we could be better for sure. But it’s kind of hard when you don’t get one (until) halfway through the second period. That has nothing to do with the officiating by the way, it was just the way the game went. There weren’t very many penalties. You don’t have the flow of the game, you don’t have the puck very often when that happens and I think tomorrow we’ll come back better.
December 8 vs San Antonio – 4:00 p.m. ET
December 11 at Utica – 7:00 p.m. ET
December 14 vs Belleville – 4:00 p.m. ET
December 15 vs Rockford – 4:00 p.m. ET
December 21 at Belleville – 7:00 p.m. ET