Leafs rebound against Bruins
Auston Matthews scored the go-ahead goal in the second period as the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated Boston 4-2 on Monday to cut the Bruins’ lead in their first-round series to 21.
Patrick Marleau, with two, and James van Riemsdyk also scored for Toronto, while Mitch Marner and Morgan Rielly added two assists each.
Frederik Andersen made 40 saves to get the win.
Adam McQuaid and Zdeno Chara replied for Boston. Sean Kuraly had two assists for the Bruins, who got 26 stops from Tuukka Rask.
The Leafs will look to even the Eastern Conference quarter-final in Thursday’s Game 4 before the series shifts back to Boston for Game 5 on Saturday.
Held pointless through 120 minutes where Toronto was outscored, outmuscled and outplayed in losing by a combined 12-4 scoreline at TD Garden, Matthews snapped a 2-2 tie with 5:13 left in the second when he rifled a shot shortside upstairs on Rask from a sharp angle after a great feed down low by William Nylander.
Boston’s top line of David Pastrnak (four goals, five assists), Brad Marchand (one goal, five assists) and Patrice Bergeron (five assists) put up an astonishing 20 points through the first six periods of the series while also holding Matthews and Toronto’s top unit off the scoresheet.
But the Leafs finally had an answer on this night as the trio failed to find the range.
The Bruins’ power play — a ridiculous five for 10 in the series coming into Monday — got its first opportunity early in the third, but Pastrnak hit the post off a feed from Rick Nash.
The Leafs finally sealed it with 3:35 left when Marleau scored his second of the night on a 2-on-1 rush, firing a shot past Rask for the 70th playoff goal of the veteran winger’s career.
Pulled after allowing three goals on five shots in the first period of Game 2, Andersen robbed Pastrnak on a jawdropping diving stick save with Rask on the bench for an extra attacker with just over two minutes to go to help preserve Toronto’s win.
Toronto led 1-0 after the first, but Boston tied things at 3:06 of the second when McQuaid’s shot from the point squeezed under Andersen’s pad and dribbled in. The goal came moments after Andersen made a ridiculous glove save from his belly on David Krejci
with Nash and Travis Dermott battling in the blue paint.
The Leafs went back ahead 43 seconds later when Marner controlled a pass off the boards from Rielly before feeding Marleau in front.