Skip to main content
game recap

Frederik Andersen, Maple Leafs end losing streak

Tyler Bozak scores twice to help Toronto defeat Panthers

by David Alter / NHL.com Correspondent

TORONTO -- Tyler Bozak scored twice, and Frederik Andersen made 29 saves for the Toronto Maple Leafs in a 3-2 win against the Florida Panthers at Air Canada Centre on Thursday.

Toronto (2-2-3) ended a four-game losing streak.

Andersen was 1-1-3 with a 4.29 goals-against average and .851 save percentage entering the game. He made nine saves and did not allow a goal in the third period.

"Every time you can walk out with a win, it's a good day," Andersen. "A good way to bounce back from last game (a 7-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday); we showed some character here and it's good to see."

Bozak scored with 3:57 left in the second period to make it 3-2. Mitchell Marner got his third assist by digging the puck out of his feet and finding Bozak at the right side of the net, where he snapped a shot from close range.

Video: FLA@TOR: Bozak nets crazy deflection past Luongo

"It just goes to show you his hockey sense and how he reads the play," linemate James van Riemsdyk said of Marner. "Just putting the puck in good areas; I mean he already knows where to find the guys without necessarily seeing them."

Van Riemsdyk tied it 2-2 at 10:26 when Marner intercepted a neutral-zone pass from Panthers defenseman Michael Matheson. Marner rushed up the ice and found van Riemsdyk, who backhanded a shot past goalie Roberto Luongo

Jason Marchessault gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead at 6:55 of the first period after intercepting a clearing attempt by Maple Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly. Marchessault found Panthers forward Jaromir Jagr to set up a 2-on-1. Jagr passed it back to Marchessault, who beat Andersen with a one-timer at 6:55.

Bozak tied it 1-1 at 18:56. He deflected a shot from the point by Maple Leafs defenseman Nikita Zaitsev, and the puck bounced over Luongo and into the net.

Video: FLA@TOR: Bozak finishes Marner's feed for second goal

"It was just a lucky play," Bozak said. "It just kind of hit my stick and bounced over my stick. But it felt good to get a bounce going our way and it kick-started us into making some plays and have real confidence."

Marchessault scored his second goal to make it 2-1 at 3:35 of the second period. He took a 100-foot stretch pass from defenseman Keith Yandle and snapped a shot past Andersen's glove.

Marchessault extended his point streak to four games (three goals, three assists) and leads the Panthers with five goals and 10 points. It was the first multigoal game of his 56-game NHL career.

"I think in life you make your chances, if you work hard good things can happen to you," Marchessault said. "I'm just trying to bring my highest level every night and be able to help out team."

Van Riemsdyk has scored in three consecutive games, equaling his NHL career-long streak.

Video: FLA@TOR: Jagr finds Marchessault on two-on-one break

 

Goal of the game

On Toronto's second goal, Marner found van Riemsdyk in front of the net by passing the puck from the right wing through the skates of Panthers defenseman Jason Demers. "We've been doing a lot of talking, both on and off the ice," Marner said. "I've been asking a lot of questions and not being afraid, I think that's why this is working so well."

Video: FLA@TOR: van Riemsdyk uses backhand to beat Luongo

 

Save of the game

With the Panthers looking for the tying goal in the third period, Yandle shot from the left wing in close, but Andersen made a glove save to stop play at 4:48.

"We haven't made it easy on him by giving up some point-blank chances, but he made some huge stops for us tonight and he had a great game," van Riemsdyk said.

 

Highlight of the game

Yandle waited as he caught the Maple Leafs on a line change and found Marchessault wide open on the right side. It allowed Marchessault to enter the Toronto zone and take a shot that beat Andersen over his glove.

Video: FAL@TOR: Marchessault nets PPG for second of game

 

Unsung moment of the game

Andersen was cut above the left eye at 12:40 of the third period, when the stick of Panthers forward Colton Sceviour went through the goalie's cage. After a delay, Andersen was able to stay in the game.

"I was just happy we could patch it up and it wouldn't bleed too much," Andersen said. "[I'm] glad we fixed it right on the bench."

 

They said it

"This would be as many good chances as we've given up all year probably, and we turned the puck over as much as we have, period, but the goalie was good. It just goes to show you how important goaltending is. I'm real happy for Freddy. It's just different. You've got to come here and find yourself. I'm happy for him, happy for the team, we're right back in everything here. Freddy was good, so great for us." -- Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock

 

What's next

Panthers: At the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday (1 p.m. ET; MSG-B, FS-F, NHL.TV)

Maple Leafs: At the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; CBC, CITY, TVA Sports, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Bozak's two-goal night leads Leafs past Panthers

View More