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Maple Leafs 5, Bruins 4, SO @NHLdotcom

TORONTO (AP) - With the playoffs on the line - the Toronto Maple Leafs desperately needed the extra point that comes with winning the shootout.

Darcy Tucker scored the only goal in a shootout and the Maple Leafs rallied for a 5-4 victory over the Boston Bruins on Tuesday night.

Mats Sundin scored twice and had an assist, and Bryan McCabe also scored and had an assist to help Toronto win back-to-back games for the first time since Feb. 4-7.

With the victory, the Maple Leafs remained tied with the New York Islanders for 10th place in the Eastern Conference - five points behind eighth-place Montreal for the final playoff spot. The Bruins are tied for 12th, 10 points behind Montreal.

"These extra points in the shootout are going to be very important down the stretch. Who knows how close it's going to be," Sundin said. "It could be the difference if you are going to make it in the playoffs, so we'll take that extra point."

Jason Allison also scored for Toronto.

Tucker scored on Toronto's second attempt in the shootout, faking right and then shooting it past goalie Tim Thomas.

"I thought I'd go to my forehand and bury it," Tucker said.

Marco Sturm scored twice, and Marty Reasoner and Glen Murray added goals for the Bruins, who have lost six straight.

Sturm missed the net on Boston's final shootout attempt, giving Toronto the victory. Boston is winless in six games decided by the shootout.

"There's no doubt the shootouts are going to make a difference in the standings," Boston coach Mike Sullivan said. "It will be a difference maker."

Asked if he liked the concept, Sullivan said: "What do you think?"

Backup goalie Mikael Tellqvist stopped Brad Boyes and Patrice Bergeron in the shootout. Tellqvist had 28 saves in place of Ed Belfour, who is day-to-day with a sore back.

Tellqvist robbed Boyes with a glove save at the end of overtime.

"These two points were very important to this team," Tellqvist said.

Toronto rallied from 3-1 and 4-2 deficits.

Reasoner gave Boston a 1-0 on the power play at 5:49 of the first, but Sundin tied it by converting Tomas Kaberle's drop pass at 15:14 of the first.

But just 31 seconds later, Sturm skated in front of the net untouched before putting the puck past Tellqvist.

Sturm made it 3-1 36 seconds into the second by scoring from the side of the net.

But Allison redirected Tie Domi's pass into the net at 7:39 of the second after jumping over the boards.

Murray stole the puck from Allison and scored at 12:47, giving Boston a 4-2 lead.

But Toronto scored twice on a two-man advantage after Hal Gill received a cross-checking penalty and Nick Boynton a minor and 10-minute misconduct for arguing with the officials.

McCabe followed with a shot that hit off the post and back to Sundin, who scored on the rebound at 15:08. Just 35 seconds later, McCabe tied it at 4 with a hard shot.

"It's tough to tell sometimes what is a penalty and what isn't," Sullivan said. "I think that's the frustrating part. Sometimes it's just arbitrary. It's not an easy thing to tell where that line is on a given night, but we certainly have to show some more discipline."

Asked if he thinks the players know what the NHL expects of them, Sullivan said. "I'd rather not comment on it. You don't want to know what I think."

Notes: Domi fought for the first time in a long time, tussling with Dan Lacouture in the first. Domi was recently a healthy scratch. ... Toronto rookie Ben Ondrus also fought Boston's Travis Green in the second. Ondrus, called up recently, sent Green to the ice. ... Bobby Orr received a loud ovation when shown on the videoboard.

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