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game recap

Maple Leafs score six against Devils, win third in row

Tavares gets ninth, Johnsson has first for Toronto

by Dave McCarthy / NHL.com Correspondent

TORONTO -- Six players scored for the Toronto Maple Leafs in a 6-1 win against the New Jersey Devils at Scotiabank Arena on Friday.

"The more you can spread out the scoring, the better," Toronto forward Patrick Marleau said. "I think guys are starting to feel better about themselves, and we're scoring the right way by playing the system, so we just want to build off that."

Morgan Rielly and Nazem Kadri each had a goal and an assist; John Tavares, Connor Brown, Andreas Johnsson and Tyler Ennis scored; and Par Lindholm and Ron Hainsey each had two assists for the Maple Leafs (11-5-0), who have won three in a row outscoring their opponents 14-2. Frederik Andersen made 38 saves.

 

[WATCH: All Devils vs. Maple Leafs highlights]

 

"I thought it was a great win," Ennis said. "Everybody from the defense to all four lines to Freddie, everyone contributed. It was a solid 60 minutes."

Travis Zajac scored, and Keith Kinkaid made 26 saves for the Devils (6-7-1), who have allowed 13 goals in their past two games and are 2-7-1 after winning four straight to start the season. 

"It's tough," Devils forward Brian Boyle said. "6-1 is 6-1, so it's really disappointing, but we have to right the ship here very soon. We have a group in here that certainly cares a lot, that's never an issue. We have character in here, that's never an issue. We need to trust that."

Tavares put the Maple Leafs up 1-0 at 12:24 of the first period when he took a pass from Hainsey at the left side of the goal crease for his ninth of the season. Toronto outshot New Jersey 15-7 in the first period.

Video: NJD@TOR: Tavares pots Hainsey's dish to open scoring

"It was great. The first period was unbelievable," Andersen said. "I think we limited their chances to barely any, actually. Obviously, they came out a little bit harder in the second and third chasing the game, but I thought we did a good job."

The Maple Leafs went up 2-0 at 1:52 of the second period. Marleau stole the puck from Devils defenseman Will Butcher and passed to Kadri, who shot over Kinkaid's glove from the top of the left face-off circle. The assist was Marleau's 600th in the NHL. 

"It's always nice when a milestone like that comes with a win," Marleau said. "The guys played great tonight, so it was fun."

Video: NJD@TOR: Marleau earns 600th assist on Kadri's goal

Brown scored at 5:07 to make it 3-0 off a pass from Lindholm at the top of the goal crease. The Devils made it 3-1 at 7:23 when Blake Coleman barged to the front of the net before Zajac put in the rebound.

Johnsson put Toronto ahead 4-1 at 15:44 when he put in a rebound from Jake Gardiner's shot for his first goal of the season in his 11th game.

"It felt good to score the first goal, especially now after we win too," Johnsson said. "This was probably the most chances I've had in a game, so it was nice to get it. I feel like the hardest part here is you have to be good every day or else you're going to get run over. To prepare for the games and how you're going to play, you have to do it every day."

Video: NJD@TOR: Johnsson puts home deflection to pad lead

Rielly scored at 17:27 of the second to make it 5-1. Ennis made it 6-1 at 12:01 of the third period when he intercepted a pass from Ben Lovejoy behind the net and put it over Kinkaid's glove.

"We've got to play the game that's dictated; we can't sit there and try to force a game," Devils captain Andy Greene said. "Each game is a different game in how we have to play to win. Some days it's a grind it out game, others it's north-south, some nights it'll be more possession. We have to battle through it and pick each other up."

 

They said it

"Our execution with the puck has to be better than what it was. I think if we do that, we'll be able to get to our game. It's about what we do. We have to continue to dig in and work and get better. For us to get out of it, the bottom line is, you can't dwell on what happened. You have to learn from it and dig in tomorrow and play a better game against [the Winnipeg Jets]." -- Devils coach John Hynes

"If the players work real hard and do things right together, we have a chance to have a lot of success, so that's what we're trying to do each and every day. Some days it goes good. Now there were a lot of those seeing-eye pucks tonight that went through crowds. It's never fun being on the wrong end of those, more fun being on the right end." -- Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock

 

Need to know

The Devils have scored more than four goals once in their past 12 games. They lost to the Ottawa Senators 7-3 on Tuesday. ... Hainsey had his 20th multiassist game in the NHL. Toronto is 5-0-0 when Hainsey has an assist. ... Tavares has five points (two goals, three assists) during a four-game point streak. ... The Maple Leafs have allowed two goals or fewer in six of their past seven games.

 

What's next

Devils: At the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, MSG+, NHL.TV)

Maple Leafs: At the Boston Bruins on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, CBC, SN360, NESN, NHL.TV)

Video: Six different Maple Leafs score in rout of Devils

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