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Reimer makes 43 saves, Maple Leafs top Canucks

by Mike Brophy /

TORONTO -- Goaltender James Reimer made 43 saves to win his third straight game, leading the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 4-2 victory against the Vancouver Canucks at Air Canada Centre on Saturday.

James van Riemsdyk, PA Parenteau, Shawn Matthias and Joffrey Lupul scored for Toronto (5-8-4), which has won three in a row.

Reimer, now 5-2-3, made 24 saves in the third period of his seventh straight start. He said he's ready to make it eight in a row against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Sunday.

"I'm ready to go," Reimer said. "It's been a lot of hockey, but playing hockey is fun. I'll see what the coach has to say, but if I get the tap I'll go in there and give it my all."

Coach Mike Babcock said he would discuss who will play against the Rangers with his coaching staff during the flight to New York. Jonathan Bernier missed five games with a lower-body injury and has not played since Oct. 31.

Reimer and the Maple Leafs also benefited from two apparent Vancouver goals that were waved off after video review.

"I feel like the boys upstairs made more saves than I did," Reimer said with a laugh, referring to the video reviews. "It was a wild one, really. I don't even know what all transpired, but having those two goals called back, that's real nice. It kind of makes up for some of the bad bounces we had earlier in the year."

Vancouver coach Willie Desjardins was not pleased that his team had two goals waved off and lost his challenge on Lupul's goal late in the third period that restored Toronto's two-goal lead.

"Just tough," Desjardins said. "I think they're all close calls. I can't say I agreed with them, but it doesn't matter. I know [goalie] Ryan [Miller] kind of thought he wasn't being held [on Lupul's goal]. Maybe he could've covered that puck. I thought it was tough. But they got a look at it, and that's what they called."

Jannik Hansen and Alexandre Burrows scored for the Canucks (7-6-5), who are 1-3-1 with two games remaining on a seven-game road trip. Miller made 36 saves.

Van Riemsdyk gave the Maple Leafs the lead at 8:23 of the first period with his sixth goal of the season. He took a drop pass from center Nazem Kadri and snapped a high shot from the top of the faceoff circle past Miller.

Parenteau made it 2-0 at 8:51 of the second period, three seconds after the first half of a 5-on-3 power play expired. It was his fourth goal of the season.

Michael Grabner had an opportunity to add to Toronto's lead at 14:50 when he was awarded a penalty shot, but Miller used his pad to stop Grabner's attempt. The save appeared to lift the Canucks, who made it 2-1 at 16:33 when Hansen beat Toronto defenseman Dion Phaneuf to the inside and snapped a shot past Reimer for his fifth goal of the season.

Grabner appeared to get his first goal of the season at 18:39 when he tipped a Jake Gardiner blast from the left point past Miller, but referee Justin St. Pierre disallowed the goal, ruling Grabner's stick was above the crossbar.

Matthias, a former Canuck, gave Toronto a 3-1 lead at 1:49 of the third period, converting from in tight on a give-and-go with center Tyler Bozak.

Asked if it felt good to score against his former team, Matthias said, "Yes, real good … real good."

Hansen appeared to have scored his second of the night at 4:53, but after a video review, the goal was waved off because Hansen was ruled to have used a deliberate kicking motion to direct the puck into the net.

Vancouver kept pushing and made it 3-2 at 10:36 when Yannick Weber's power-play shot from the left point hit Burrows and went past Reimer with Parenteau in the penalty box. It was Burrows' fourth goal of the season.

But Lupul restored Toronto's two-goal lead at 16:16 when he drilled home his sixth goal of the season, and the 200th of his career, following a scramble in front of the Vancouver net. The Canucks challenged the goal, claiming Miller was interfered with, but it was allowed to stand after video review.

Radim Vrbata beat Reimer with two seconds remaining, but Babcock challenged that the play was offside and the goal was washed out after a review.

Despite the result, Desjardins was impressed with his team's refusal to quit.

"The guys wanted it in the third [period]," he said. "They came hard. But we just didn't find a way."

But captain Henrik Sedin was not happy with the Canucks' overall performance.

"We made way too many mistakes," Sedin said. "We were sloppy. We didn't get anything going. We're still making way too many mistakes, and we've got to stop talking about that we're a young team. We have to simplify things. Five-on-5 we have to get away from those turnovers and easy goals for the opponent."

Prior to the game, there was a moment of silence to honor the victims of the attacks in Paris on Friday.

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