for this game

Walker's overtime goal caps Hurricanes' comeback

Dec 19, 2007 - 4:40 AM
RALEIGH, North Carolina (Ticker) -- The Toronto Maple Leafs held a two-goal advantage with less than 90 seconds left in regulation, but could not come away with a victory.

Cory Stillman scored a goal and set up another in a span of 58 seconds late in the third period and Eric Staal tallied the game-winner in overtime as the Carolina Hurricanes posted a 3-2 comeback victory over the Maple Leafs on Tuesday night.

Staal's slap shot from the left point deflected off the stick of Maple Leafs defenseman Pavel Kubina and went past Vesa Toskala with just 33 seconds left in the extra session as the Hurricanes have won back-to-back games after regulation following a three-game losing skid.

"The one that got us going there and got us on the board was just a simple shot to the point and Stillman was there for the rebound," Carolina coach Peter Laviolette said. "We were able to get some life, it's 2-1, the building comes alive and all of a sudden there's energy out there."

It was Staal's fourth game-winning tally of the season, which matches his career high.

After Stillman forced a turnover in the defensive zone, Erik Cole led a rush up the ice and sent a cross-ice pass to Ray Whitney, who blasted a one-timer past Toskala to tie the game at 2-2 with just 27 ticks left in the third period.

"We played a pretty good game. We just didn't get anything out of it until the end," Whitney said.

Toronto left wing Alexei Ponikarovsky, who had the puck stolen from him by Stillman, said he made the wrong play.

"I didn't know the guy was coming behind me," Ponikarovsky said. "I took a little bit more time than I should have and he lifted my stick up and caused the turnover. It's not acceptable to do that kind of stuff at that time of the game with 20 or 30 seconds left. I probably should have put the puck deep and tried to stop them on the rush."

It was the fifth time this season that the Maple Leafs have squandered a third-period lead.

"It's a tough loss for us because we played a solid game except for the last two minutes," Kubina said. "With two minutes (to go), I thought it was game over. We had a couple of chances to shoot the puck in from the red line, but I don't know why we didn't shoot it in. We just made a mistake. Unfortunately, their pucks went in."

Toronto coach Paul Maurice was disappointed with the outcome.

"There's no other plays that needed to be made at that point," Maurice said. "You've got to sense the urgency of the back pressure and get the puck in deep."

Stillman had tied the game less than a minute earlier, notching his 17th goal of the season to cut the deficit to 2-1 with 85 seconds remaining.

"To come back from two goals down with a minute-and-a-half left - we've got to get momentum after that," Stillman said.

The goal ended Toskala's bid for his third shutout of the season and 11th of his career. The Finn made 35 saves on Tuesday.

Boyd Devereaux opened the scoring just 22 seconds after leaving the penalty box. After defenseman Tomas Kaberle's attempt hit the side of the net and bounced in front, Devereaux chipped the puck into the vacant net with 2:10 left in the first period.

The Maple Leafs doubled their advantage with 96 seconds remaining in the second period when Kaberle grabbed a puck behind the Hurricanes' goal and and tucked it around the post by John Grahame. It was Kaberle's sixth goal and fourth on the power play this season.

Grahame, who's played sparingly so far, stopped 34 shots, including all 16 he faced in the third period and a backhanded shot by Toronto captain Mats Sundin in overtime. Grahame earned wins in back-to-back games for the first time this season after pulling out a shootout victory over Philadelphia in his last outing.

"It's great win and a momentum-builder for us and hopefully we can keep it going," Grahame said.

Carolina played without captain Rod Brind'Amour, who missed the game with the flu. He was supposed to play his 1,300th game but that will have to wait until at least the club's next game on Thursday at the Florida Panthers.








  • NHL
    FINAL IN OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1 0 0 2
    CAROLINA 0 0 2 1 3 FINAL IN OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - BOYD DEVEREAUX 6 (TOMAS KABERLE, CHAD KILGER) 17:50
    2ND PRD: TOR - (PP) TOMAS KABERLE 6 (UNASSISTED) 18:24
    3RD PRD: CAR - CORY STILLMAN 17 (FRANTISEK KABERLE, JUSTIN W

    Dec 18 9:35 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    CAROLINA 3
    OT: CAR - (PP) SCOTT WALKER 4 (ERIC STAAL) 4:27

    Dec 18 9:35 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    CAROLINA 3
    OT: CAR - (PP) SCOTT WALKER 4 (ERIC STAAL) 4:27

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 9:35 PM
  • 139
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 67 roots (Overtime)

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 9:25 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1 0 2
    CAROLINA 0 0 2 2 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - BOYD DEVEREAUX 6 (TOMAS KABERLE, CHAD KILGER) 17:50
    2ND PRD: TOR - (PP) TOMAS KABERLE 6 (UNASSISTED) 18:24
    3RD PRD: CAR - CORY STILLMAN 17 (FRANTISEK KABERLE, JUSTIN WILLIAMS)
    18:35
    CAR - RAY WHI

    Dec 18 9:22 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    CAROLINA 2
    3RD PRD: CAR - RAY WHITNEY 15 (ERIK COLE) 19:33

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 9:22 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    CAROLINA 1
    3RD PRD: CAR - CORY STILLMAN 17 (FRANTISEK KABERLE, JUSTIN WILLIAMS)
    18:35

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 9:22 PM
  • 72
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 55 roots (Close Finish)

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 9:22 PM
  • 17
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 17 roots (Close Finish)

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 9:22 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1 2
    CAROLINA 0 0 0 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - BOYD DEVEREAUX 6 (TOMAS KABERLE, CHAD KILGER) 17:50
    2ND PRD: TOR - (PP) TOMAS KABERLE 6 (UNASSISTED) 18:24
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TOR 9 9 18
    C

    Dec 18 8:30 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    CAROLINA 0
    2ND PRD: TOR - (PP) TOMAS KABERLE 6 (UNASSISTED) 18:24

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 8:29 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1
    CAROLINA 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - BOYD DEVEREAUX 6 (TOMAS KABERLE, CHAD KILGER) 17:50
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TOR 9 9
    CAR 13 13
    GOALIES: TOR - VESA TOSKALA
    CA

    Dec 18 7:40 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    CAROLINA 0
    1ST PRD: TOR - BOYD DEVEREAUX 6 (TOMAS KABERLE, CHAD KILGER) 17:50

    Maple Leafs vs. HurricanesDec 18 7:38 PM