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game recap

Maple Leafs lose Matthews, win game against Jets

Score three goals in third period to complete comeback; forward injures shoulder in second period

by Dave McCarthy / Correspondent

TORONTO -- Auston Matthews left with a shoulder injury in the Toronto Maple Leafs' 3-2 win against the Winnipeg Jets at Scotiabank Arena on Saturday. 

Matthews was hit by Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba at 1:52 of the second period while driving to the net. He appeared to be in discomfort as he skated to the bench, where he was assessed by the training staff briefly before walking to the locker room.

"He's got a shoulder injury. We'll look at it on Monday and we'll know more on Monday," Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock said. "He's not practicing on Sunday and won't play on Monday (against the Calgary Flames). He's not ready right away for sure."


[WATCH: All Jets vs. Maple Leafs highlights | RELATED: Matthews leaves with shoulder injury]


Said Mitchell Marner, "It's tough. He's a big part of this team and everyone knows that. He's a needed player on this team."

Kyle Connor and Mark Scheifele scored, and Connor Hellebuyck made 28 saves for Winnipeg (7-4-1), which had won four of its past five games.

"I liked our game the first two periods and chunks of the third," Jets coach Paul Maurice said. "I thought we played a real hard game and looked like we were supposed to look, so that's a real encouraging sign. We couldn't close it out. We made two or three mistakes with the puck in our end of the ice and that was the difference for us, but most of this game was pretty close to our game."

Video: WPG@TOR: Gardiner picks the corner on Hellebuyck

Nazem Kadri, Jake Gardiner and Kasperi Kapanen scored, and Frederik Andersen made 22 saves for Toronto (8-3-0), which also defeated the Jets 4-2 on Wednesday.

"I thought they played really well tonight, started out hot, but Nazem gave us some energy there but we came back," said Gardiner, who played his 500th NHL game. "You don't see that too often, so it's nice to come back on these guys."

Kadri cut it to 2-1 at 6:33 of the third period, taking a pass from Marner and scoring from low in the right circle. Gardiner tied it 2-2 at 16:49, beating Hellebuyck glove side from the slot.

Kapanen gave the Maple Leafs a 3-2 lead 26 seconds later, getting a loose puck low in the right circle and scoring short side.

"To be honest, I didn't really see anything," Kapanen said. "I just saw the puck kind of come towards me and thought I'd shoot it on net. I didn't see where it went, but am glad that it went in."

Kadri said they were confident they could come from behind despite trailing 2-0 going into the third period.

"We never feel like we're down and out," Kadri said. "They had most of the momentum, but we just needed an early start and a couple of good shifts to start that third period. We scored first (in the third) and that got the ball rolling."

Connor gave Winnipeg a 1-0 lead at 9:38 of the first period on the power play, converting a cross-ice pass from Blake Wheeler at the top of the crease.

Scheifele extended the lead to 2-0 at 11:00 of the second period when he stole the puck from Kadri at the Jets blueline and beat Andersen on the low blocker side on a breakaway.

"It was great, it was right where we wanted it, but we couldn't stop the momentum there during that five or eight-minute span," Wheeler said. "We did a lot of really good things coming off a game last night (2-1 win against Detroit Red Wings), three in four days. It was a pretty good effort, but once they seized momentum, it just seemed like pucks were finding them and they made some good plays."

Video: WPG@TOR: Kapanen scores clutch goal late in the 3rd


They said it

"Well he's not shooting and he's not scoring goals on the shots he gets, but his 5-on-5 is better than it was last year. That's just a fact. He scored 44 (last year), so we're pretty excited about it. I've got full faith and confidence that he's going to score and until he does, we'll just keep working on his game." -- Jets coach Paul Maurice on Patrik Laine


"We're a pretty calm group in here. Going into the third, we came in here (locker room), we were talking to each other and knew what we needed to do to win this game. We knew how hard we needed to work to win this game, and we needed to make sure we pushed back. I think when we started doing that we got the results." -- Maple Leafs forward Mitchell Marner


Need to know

Laine has gone five straight games without a point. … Scheifele has eight points (four goals, four assists) during a five-game point streak. … Connor has six points (two goals, four assists) during a five-game point streak. … Marner had two assists to give him 100 in his NHL career. … Maple Leafs forward Tyler Ennis played in his 500th NHL game.  


What's next

Jets: Against the Florida Panthers in the 2018 NHL Global Series in Helsinki on Thursday (2 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN3, NHL.TV)

Maple Leafs: Host the Calgary Flames on Monday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVAS, NHL.TV)

Video: Maple Leafs rally in the 3rd period to beat the Jets

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