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OT Swamps Leafs Again

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
Matthew Iaboni

January 29, 2010
Prudential Center
Newark, NJ
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Heading into the third period, the Leafs trailed 4-2 but thanks to two late goals from Alexei Ponikarovsky and Matt Stajan they pushed the Devils to overtime.

After both teams exchanged chances, Luke Schenn got caught up ice and in trying to prevent a goal, he hooked Travis Zajac. 22 seconds after the penalty Zajac wired home the overtime winner as the Leafs dropped another in overtime.

300 Career NHL games for Leafs' forward Colton Orr.
1 Career NHL goal for Carl Gunnarsson who scored in the first period.
1-11 Leafs' record in overtime this season.
6 Goals for Colton Orr is his NHL career.
11 Points for the Devils' top line of Zach Parise, Travis Zajac and Dainius Zubrus.
1st Star
Travis Zajac
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2nd Star
Zach Parise
G A P +/- Shots
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3rd Star
Matt Stajan
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For the second straight game, an American player put on a show for Team USA head coach Ron Wilson. This time it was the Devils' Zach Parise who was too much for the Leafs.

The dynamic forward had two goals in the first 20 minutes and if it weren't for four Jonas Gustavsson saves in the second he might have had more. Parise finished the game with two goals, two assists, nine shots, a plus two rating in 20:41 of ice-time.

The Leafs' fourth line was by far their best trio on the night. Colton Orr was signed in the summer as one of the best fighters in the league.

But against New Jersey he showed showed nice hands when he beat Martin Brodeur on a breakaway in the second period. It was Orr's second goal of the year. He finished the game a plus two and he also led both teams with five hits.

The Maple Leafs have struggled to keep the puck out of their net this season and against the Devils that was no different. Although the Leafs opened the scoring, it lasted only 59 seconds before Parise scored his first of two in the period. 

The Leafs are a minus 17 in the first period this season and they have only five wins when trailing after the opening 20 minutes.

Ron Wilson's analysis after yet another overtime loss:

"We just didn't get the job done on the penalty kill and we didn't get a save. But we hung in there. We found a way to battle back and get a point and I was confident that we could get it to a shootout and get another point but we didn't get a chance to get there."

Saturday January 30 vs. Canucks
  7 PM ET (CBC, AM640)

Game Notes:
The Leafs close out the back-to-back as they host the Vancouver Canucks on Troops Night at the ACC and also Hockey Day in Canada.

The Canucks begin  their-14 game road trip that will take 42 days as the Olympics are set to begin February 12th in Vancouver.

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