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game recap

Frederik Andersen gets second straight shutout

Makes 22 saves for Maple Leafs; Red Wings point streak ends at six games

by Dave Hogg / NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- Frederik Andersen made 22 saves for his second straight shutout, and the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Detroit Red Wings 4-0 at Joe Louis Arena on Wednesday.

Toronto (23-14-9) is 5-1-1 in its past seven games and has gotten a point in 11 straight road games (9-0-2).

"The guys did a great job in front of me, getting in the shooting lanes and keeping the puck off me," said Andersen, who had back-to-back shutouts for the first time in his NHL career. "This was a big game because Detroit is trying to catch us and we got some separation."

 

WATCH: All Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings highlights 

 

Andersen had an assist on Nikita Soshnikov's third-period goal, the second time in his NHL career he's had a shutout and an assist.

"I saw [Soshnikov] was wide open on the wing so I tried to bank it off the wall and hit him," he said. "It doesn't always work, but it did that time."

The Red Wings (20-20-9), who had a six-game point streak end, lost their fourth straight (0-1-3) and fell six points behind the Maple Leafs in the Atlantic Division. Toronto has three games in hand.

"I'm not worried about them right now," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "I know we've got to be a little better. This was a huge game and we lost it. Now we have to come back after the [All-Star] break and keep grinding."

Video: Andersen earns Wednesday's Pepsi Zero Sugar Shutout

Petr Mrazek made 24 saves for the Red Wings; he is 0-6-2 in his past eight starts.

"I just have to stay positive and work hard," he said. "I've had good looks in some of those games and again tonight."

Auston Matthews gave Toronto a 1-0 lead with an unassisted goal at 5:30. On his third scoring chance of the shift, he gathered in a loose puck and flipped a backhand over Mrazek's shoulder for his 23rd of the season.

"We knew that Detroit played last night in Boston (a 4-3 overtime loss) so they were going to be tired," Matthews said. "We wanted to use our speed and wear them down."

Roman Polak, playing in his 600th NHL game, made it 2-0 at 15:35 of the second period when his point shot deflected off Jonathan Ericsson's leg and past Mrazek.

Video: TOR@DET: Polak nets pinpoint blast in 600th NHL game

"The guys told me that I should score one for my 600th game," Polak said. "I got it, but I needed a little luck."

James van Riemsdyk put the Maple Leafs ahead 3-0 at 4:19 of the third with his 17th goal. His shot from a bad angle hit Mrazek and deflected under the crossbar.

Soshnikov ended a 33-game scoring drought at 8:14 with a wrist shot from the top of the right faceoff circle.

"I know we can't give up four goals a game and win," Blashill said.

 

Goal of the game

Matthews had the winning goal against Detroit in the 2017 Scotiabank NHL Centennial Classic on New Year's Day and got another game-winner Wednesday. He stole the puck from Ericsson, tapped it between Xavier Ouellet's legs, kicked it onto his stick and beat Mrazek.

Video: TOR@DET: Matthews finds twine on great solo effort

 

Save of the game 

With eight minutes to play, Red Wings forward Darren Helm broke in alone and tried to score with a low forehand, but Andersen made the save with his right pad despite getting jammed into the post.

Video: TOR@DET: Andersen extends pad to rob Helm's breakaway

 

Highlight of the game

Soshnikov took Andersen's pass at his blue line, skated down the wing and used Danny DeKeyser as a screen on a wrist shot that went under Mrazek's blocker. It was his first goal since Nov. 5.

Video: TOR@DET: Soshnikov races up ice and snaps in wrister

 

Unsung moment of the game

Frans Nielsen and Andreas Athanasiou had a 2-on-1 shorthanded rush early in the second period, and Athanasiou's pass took Maple Leafs defenseman Nikita Zaitsev out of the play. With Nielsen about to shoot, Nazem Kadri dove along the ice, reached forward with his stick and, on the second try, knocked the puck away.

Video: TOR@DET: Kadri races back to break up odd-man rush

 

They said it

"We know that the way we skate we can wear teams out and they were coming off an overtime game last night." -- Maple Leafs defenseman Roman Polak

 

"We know we're a good team when we play the right way but we have to do it for 60 minutes. That's the only way out of this." -- Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall

 

Need to know

Andresen made 26 saves in a 4-0 win against the Calgary Flames on Monday. ... Matthews is the first Maple Leafs rookie to score five game-winning goals in a season since Steve Thomas in 1985-86, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. ... Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock said defenseman Morgan Rielly (ankle) should be ready to play after the All-Star break. Rielly will miss his fifth straight game Thursday at the Philadelphia Flyers. … Maple Leafs goalie Curtis McElhinney is scheduled to start on Thursday. … After missing two games, Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin (upper body) is expected to play Tuesday against the New Jersey Devils following the five-day break.

 

What's next

Maple Leafs: At the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; CSN-PH, SNO, NHL.TV)

Red Wings: Host the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; MSG+ 2, FS-D, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Andersen, Maple Leafs blank Red Wings, 4-0

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