TORONTO (AP) -- The Toronto Maple Leafs haven't led the league in points this
deep into the season since 1962-63.
Gary Roberts scored twice, and the Maple Leafs extended their
franchise-record points streak to 15 games with a 5-2 victory over the Florida
Panthers on Tuesday night.
Nik Antropov added a goal and an assist for the Leafs, who haven't lost in
regulation since Nov. 20 at Edmonton. Toronto is 13-0-1-1 during the stretch.
The win and Philadelphia's loss at the New York Islanders, moved Toronto
into first place overall in the NHL.
"To be one of the top teams in the league, you need to have four lines
playing well and right now we have that going for us," Toronto captain Mats
Just over a month ago, Toronto was only one game over .500 and tied with
Buffalo for 11th in the NHL.
The Maple Leafs continued their new tradition of embracing in a group hug
after the win.
"Every game somebody else scores," said Karel Pilar, who got his first
goal of the season. "I'm happy to be in first."
Pavel Trnka and Kristian Huselius scored for the Panthers, who lost in
overtime to Ottawa on Monday night.
Florida goalie Roberto Luongo allowed four goals on 23 shots before being
replaced by Steve Shields at the start of the third period.
Shields left the game with 1:47 left after being hit in the face mask with a
Toronto goalie Ed Belfour made 29 saves, including an impressive stop on
Niklas Hagman, who was alone at the side of the net midway through the second.
Fans chanted `Eddie!, Eddie!' throughout.
"You've got to credit Belfour. He made some great saves," Florida coach
Rick Dudley said. "When it was a one-goal game, he made some huge saves. We
didn't bury our chances, they did."
Roberts streaked toward the net and redirected Sundin's pinpoint pass,
giving Toronto a 1-0 lead on the power play.
Pilar's slap shot from the boards made it 2-0 at 14:34 of the second, but
Trnka cut the lead to 2-1 just 17 seconds into the second by redirecting a pass
from in front of the net.
Roberts scored his second power-play goal at 5:04 of the second, and
Antropov's slap shot from the circle gave Toronto a 4-1 lead at 13:50 of the
"Gary has made a career of getting those goals in tight. Tonight was no
exception," Toronto's Joe Nieuwendyk said.
The Maple Leafs went 2-for-3 on the power-play, and the Panthers went