After falling behind 2-0 in the first period, Colby Armstrong's first goal of the season got the Leafs on the board in the third period and he gave them some life.
Twelve seconds after Armstrong's goal, the Leafs were on the PP and they had numerous chances to tie the game including Kris Versteeg being robbed on a breakaway by Martin Biron. They wouldn't get a better chance even with the extra attacker.
Artem Anisimov was by far the best player on either team Thursday. The young Russian centre was dangerous all game long. His goal in the first period wasn't fancy, he went hard to the net and tapped in a nice pass by Michal Rozsival that ended up being the winner.
Anisimov playing in his second full season will be counted on with all the injuries to the Rangers. He finished the night with one goal, a plus one in just over 16 minutes of action.
Getting his first start of the year at home, Jonas Gustavsson kept the Leafs in the game and gave them a chance to win. His defencemen struggled with the bigger Rangers forwards but he was there to back them up.
Gustavsson couldn't be faulted for either Rangers goal. The first goal, the puck lay on the goalline before Ruslan Fedotenko pushed it across and the second goal it was slick passing that allowed a tap in.
Two areas of the game where the Rangers were much better: Blocking shots and hits. It wasn't uncommon to see the Rangers force the Leafs into a bad shot or get down to block a shot completely. They ended the game with 30 blocked shots while the Leafs had just 12.
Although the hit margin wasn't that big, the Rangers were more willing to take the body or angle the Leafs into the corner where they used their height difference to stymie the smaller Leafs forwards.
Ron Wilson on benching Tyler Bozak and juggling the lines:
"I didn't think he was playing well. So I made some changes towards the end of the second period and Steeger (Kris Versteeg) can play centre, shook some things up ... I moved Army (Colby Armstrong) up and on his first shift with Grabo (Mikhail Grabovski) and Clarke MacArthur they scored a goal so that's what you're looking for. You don't stand and wait for something to happen."
Saturday October 23 @ Flyers 7 PM ET (CBC, AM640)
Game Notes: The Maple Leafs finish off their five straight games against Atlantic Division teams when they face the Stanley Cup runners up.
The Flyers are off to a slow start (2-3-1) with a record of just 1-3 at home. They have lost three straight and four of their last five games.