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Leafs Rookies Fall In Physical Affair With Bruins

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
by John Bartlett

The Leafs showed some grit, guts and scoring talent in their second game of the Rookie Tournament.

In a hard fought, high scoring battle, Toronto dropped a 6-5 overtime decision to the Boston Bruins on Monday afternoon at The Aud in Kitchener. Despite the loss, the young Buds displayed some physical play with a hat trick of fights, while Christian Hanson had the hat trick in goals.

The Bruins opened the scoring as Jason Wilson pounced on a rebound and fired it past James Reimer for the 1-0 lead. Jamie Arniel made it a 2-0 game on a nice play in front of the goal, after the Bruins finished killing off a Leafs power play and led the rush back up ice.

Christian Hanson got the Leafs on the board with a nice give and go from Nazem Kadri midway through the period to make it a 2-1 game. Then the rough stuff began as the Leafs were showing off their new tougher side with three consecutive fights over three whistles. Alex Berry tangled with Scott Fletcher, followed by Stefano Giliatti with Jordan Knackstead and then a big tilt with Jamie Devane and Peter Stevens.

Hanson tied the game up early in the second period after Kadri tapped the puck along the goal line behind Adam Courchaine, but the puck was cleared away from the goal line right out front, where Hanson had the open net to make it a 2-2 game. Tyler Bozak gave the Leafs the lead on the power play with just over seven minutes to go in the period. Bozak wired a shot from the top of the left circle past the stick side of Courchaine. It’s the first goal in the Blue and White for the free agent signing.

Boston kicked off the flurry of goals just 10 seconds into the third period to tie the game 3-3, but it wasn’t long before Kadri broke in from the blue line and made a nice backhand move on Courchaine to put the Leafs up 4-3. Moments later Tyler Randell cut in front of the goal and slipped the puck under Reimer to even the score. Hanson would complete the hat trick on the power play, when his shot from the right circle went right under the crossbar to give Toronto a 5-4 lead. It wouldn’t last though, as Rob Kweit fired a high shot over the glove of Reimer through traffic with less than two minutes to go in the third to tie the game 5-5.

In overtime, Arniel set up Zach Hamill with a give and go as Hamill fed the pass back to Arniel who slipped the puck past the outstretched arm of Reimer for the game winning goal.
Toronto out shot Boston 39-36 in the game.

Richard Greenop, Dale Mitchell, Juraj Mikus and Jonas Gustavsson were the scratches for the Labour Day contest.

The Leafs are off tomorrow and will next face the Pittsburgh Penguins in a rematch on Wednesday night at 7p.m. The Leafs beat the Penguins 3-1 on Sunday.

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