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Dwyer, Hurricanes down Leafs

Dec 29, 2010 - 4:23 AM
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Patrick Dwyer deflected home a Tim Gleason shot late in the third period to lift the Carolina Hurricanes to a 4-3 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre.

Eric Staal scored twice and Jeff Skinner also tallied for the Hurricanes, who snapped a three-game slide and have won eight of the last 10 games against Toronto. Cam Ward turned aside 34-of-37 shots to pick up the victory.

"It's a good win. We needed to have it," Staal said. "We had a good start, second period was pretty bad. We hung in there. Cam made some good saves and we got the win."

Phil Kessel notched a pair of goals, while Mikhail Grabovski added a marker for Toronto, which has dropped four of five. Jonas Gustavsson made 23 saves in defeat.

Deadlocked at 3-3, the Hurricanes went ahead for good with 5:11 remaining in regulation. Zach Boychuk picked up the puck in the left circle and sent it back to the left point to Gleason, who fired a shot toward the net. Dwyer setting a screen in front, got a piece of the puck to deflect it past Ward for a 4-3 game.

Boychuck was whistled for a hooking minor with 3:45 to play, but Toronto came up empty on the power play. The Leafs got yet another man advantage with 32 seconds to go when Staal took a cross-checking minor. However, despite good pressure around the Hurricanes net, Toronto was unable to get the equalizer.

Carolina opened the scoring 7:34 into the contest when Skinner won the battle for a loose puck in front and fired it between Gustavsson's legs from the low slot.

Skating with a 5-on-3 advantage, Kessel's one-timer from the right circle evened things at 11:48.

However, Staal briefly put the Hurricanes ahead 2-1 on a breakaway tally at 14:08, but Kessel's backhander from in close handcuffed Ward to tie the contest 82 seconds later.

Carolina got a power-play opportunity late in the first and capitalized when Sergei Samsonov spotted Staal for a redirection on the doorstep with 10 seconds remaining and a 3-2 game after 20 minutes.

Grabovski pulled Toronto even again with a power-play tally 8:17 into the middle stanza after a Carolina defender deflected a shot right onto his stick and he potted it home from the left side of the net. It stayed tied after two periods.

Game Notes

Carolina forward Jussi Jokinen left after the first period with a lower-body injury and did not return...Toronto went 2-for-8 on the power play, while the Hurricanes finished 1-for-3 with the man advantage.