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Leafs fall at feet of Bruins

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
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TORONTO (Ticker) -- With the way the Boston Bruins are playing on the road to start the season, they may never want to go home.

Jozef Stumpel scored a goal and assisted on two others as the Bruins ended a season-opening six-game road trip with their fourth win, 4-1 over the Toronto Maple Leafs.

After dropping the opener against the Minnesota Wild, Boston ended the trip undefeated in its last five (4-0-1).

"The road brings the team a little bit closer together," Stumpel said. "We were diappointed in Minnesota, but we played well today."

Mats Sundin scored the Leafs lone goal and had another disallowed.
Graig Abel Photography
The Bruins had not opened a season with a five-game road trip since 1944-45.

Glen Murray snapped a 1-1 tie on a rebound of Marty McInnis' slap shot from the slot with 6:24 left in the second period, and 17 seconds later defenseman Hal Gill directed a soft wrist shot from the blue line past a screened Ed Belfour.

The Bruins scored three unanswered goals in the period, with rookie Ivan Huml netting a goal in his second straight game to make it 3-1 at 19:47.

Stumpel got the Bruins going early as he netted his second goal of the season on the team's first shot 1:06 into the game. It marked the first time the Maple Leafs allowed the opposition to score first this season.

Toronto could only beat Bruins goaltender Steve Shields with a two-man advantage in the first period, when Mats Sundin scored his fourth goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1.

"They're playing good," Sundin said. "I'm not trying to take anything away from their win, but we didn't have a very good game tonight. The second period probably was our worst of the year. I don't think it would have mattered who we played tonight, we wouldn't have won this game."

In only his second start, Shields turned aside 33 shots to remain undefeated (2-0-1) in three appearances.

"I don't know if the guys want to go home," Shields said. "We're playing pretty well. The first game at home is going to be really tough after a long trip."

Ed Belfour allowed four goals on 22 shots in his first start in Toronto since being signed as a free agent in the offseason.

"It was a tough loss, unfortunately my first start," Belfour said. "I'd love to have a great game, but it didn't go my way, or the team's way."

Belfour was booed in his Maple Leafs debut at the Air Canada Centre.

"I thought they were cheering me on. I appreciate their support," Belfour joked.

Boston's win gave coach Robbie Ftorek the 200th of his career.

"It gave us two points tonight and that was the important thing," Ftorek said.

The Bruins play six of their next eight games at home, beginning Thursday when they take on the Ottawa Senators.
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