for this game

Leafs snap three-game slide on late goal by O'Neill

Dec 27, 2006 - 6:49 AM
TORONTO (Ticker) -- Jeff O'Neill made Toronto's hard work pay off in the third period.

O'Neill fired a rebound past goaltender Manny Fernandez with 2:18 left to lift the Maple Leafs to a 4-3 victory over the Minnesota Wild.

The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Leafs, who will be without center Michael Peca for at least four months due to a broken leg suffered last Friday in a game against Chicago.

Mats Sundin scored a power-play goal in the first period and won the faceoff that led to O'Neill's game-winner. Sundin tapped the puck to Bryan McCabe, who snapped a shot from between the faceoff circles. Fernandez made the save with his left pad, but O'Neill was positioned in front for the rebound and roofed the puck just under the right crossbar.

"It's almost like a set play," Sundin said. "It's tough for defensemen to defend when Bryan (McCabe) gets a little time to shoot. This time it was a good rebound that came to Jeff and he was able to put it away. It's nice to not have to go to overtime."

Toronto outshot the Wild, 15-6, in the third period.

The Maple Leafs tied the game, 2-2, on a penalty shot by John Pohl with 7:16 left in the second period. Pohl skated in on Fernandez and quickly went from forehand to backhand, lifting the puck over the goalie's right pad.

"It's a good story, he's (John Pohl) from Minnesota," Maple Leafs coach Paul Maurice said. "It was a great move on the penalty shot. I haven't seen that one before. He's got lots of confidence, he's playing well. He's just getting faster, he's getting stronger and having confidence in his game."

Alex Steen, who was put on the top line with Sundin, gave Toronto a 3-2 lead 3:49 into the third period on a gift goal when Fernandez failed to close his glove on a weak shot.

Brian Rolston tied the game with a power-play goal with 10:28 left, ending an 0-for-26 drought for the Wild with the man advantage.

Kurtis Foster and Wes Walz also scored for Minnesota, which is winless in its last nine road games (0-8-1).

"It's been a while, so it's obviously affecting us," Fernandez said of the Wild's road struggles. " If it's in the back of our minds I don't know. Obviously, it is."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 1 1 3
    TORONTO 1 1 2 4 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - KURTIS FOSTER 2 (JOEL WARD) 2:53
    TOR - (PP) MATS SUNDIN 15 (JOHN POHL, TOMAS KABERLE) 18:58
    2ND PRD: MIN - WES WALZ 4 (BRANKO RADIVOJEVIC, PASCAL DUPUIS) 11:47
    TOR - (PS) JOHN POHL 5 12:44
    3RD PRD: TOR - (PP) AL

    Dec 26 10:01 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 3
    TORONTO 4
    3RD PRD: TOR - JEFF O'NEILL 12 (BRYAN MCCABE, MATS SUNDIN) 17:42

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 9:57 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 3
    TORONTO 3
    3RD PRD: MIN - (PP) BRIAN ROLSTON 17 (TODD WHITE, KIM JOHNSSON) 9:32

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 9:38 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 2
    TORONTO 3
    3RD PRD: TOR - (PP) ALEX STEEN 3 (IAN WHITE, PAVEL KUBINA) 3:49

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 9:27 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 1 2
    TORONTO 1 1 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - KURTIS FOSTER 2 (JOEL WARD) 2:53
    TOR - (PP) MATS SUNDIN 15 (JOHN POHL, TOMAS KABERLE) 18:58
    2ND PRD: MIN - WES WALZ 4 (BRANKO RADIVOJEVIC, KIM JOHNSSON) 11:47
    TOR - (PS) JOHN POHL 5 12:44
    SHOTS ON G

    Dec 26 9:03 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 2
    TORONTO 2
    2ND PRD: TOR - (PS) JOHN POHL 5 12:44

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 8:52 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 2
    TORONTO 1
    2ND PRD: MIN - WES WALZ 4 (BRANKO RADIVOJEVIC, KIM JOHNSSON) 11:47

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 8:52 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 1
    TORONTO 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - KURTIS FOSTER 2 (JOEL WARD) 2:53
    TOR - (PP) MATS SUNDIN 15 (JOHN POHL, TOMAS KABERLE) 18:58
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MIN 9 9
    TOR 13

    Dec 26 8:11 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    TORONTO 1
    1ST PRD: TOR - (PP) MATS SUNDIN 15 (JOHN POHL, TOMAS KABERLE) 18:58

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 8:10 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    TORONTO 0
    1ST PRD: MIN - KURTIS FOSTER 2 (JOEL WARD) 2:53

    Wild vs. Maple LeafsDec 26 7:44 PM