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Tucker scores twice as Maple Leafs top Canadiens

Feb 8, 2008 - 4:11 AM
MONTREAL (Ticker) -- The Toronto Maple Leafs rebounded from a humiliating defeat by toppling one of the hottest teams in the league.

Darcy Tucker scored two goals and Kris Newbury and Kyle Wellwood also tallied as the Maple Leafs skated past the Montreal Canadiens, 4-2, on Thursday in a battle of "Original Six" rivals.

Vesa Toskala made 34 saves and captain Mats Sundin recorded his 1,300th career point with an assist as Toronto bounced back from an embarrassing 8-0 loss to the Florida Panthers on Tuesday to win for just the second time in its last six games.

"(The Bell Centre) is a fun building to play (in). It was a good win and a great way to bounce back after Tuesday's game," Toskala said. "Even though there was traffic, I was able to find the puck pretty good behind the guys. You just have to work a bit harder when there's lots of bodies in front of you."

Tomas Plekanec and Alexei Kovalev each had a goal and an assist for Montreal, which fell to 5-2-1 in its last eight contests.

"We didn't do our job to get the win tonight," Montreal's Christopher Higgins said. "When you lose, it hits home that you're not doing your job. It's tough to have to keep going like this, you just keep digging yourself in a deeper hole. When you lose, it's tough falling asleep at night."

Plekanec opened the scoring 11:09 into the contest by accepting a brilliant feed from Kovalev and firing the puck past Toskala. The goal was Plekanec's 20th of the campaign, tying his career high set last season.

Newbury leveled the game with 2:36 remaining in the first period.

After gaining possession of the puck along the side boards, Dominic Moore backhanded a pass to Newbury in the slot. The 25-year-old fired a shot past rookie goaltender Carey Price for his first goal of the season.

Tucker gave Toronto the lead just 84 seconds into the middle period. Stationed behind the net, Matt Stajan fed a streaking Tucker, who buried the puck just inside the right goalpost.

"It feels good when you can contribute and win the hockey game," Tucker said. "There's no better feeling than that as a hockey player. That's what you strive for."

Wellwood gave the Maple Leafs a two-goal advantage with just 24 seconds remaining in the session.

With Toronto on the power play, All-Star defenseman Tomas Kaberle blasted a shot that Wellwood redirected into Price's right pad. Wellwood, however, alertly regained possession and wristed the puck over the fallen netminder and under the crossbar as he was checked to the ice by blue-liner Mike Komisarek for his sixth goal.

Making his first start since January 5, Price finished with 24 saves in suffering his first loss in four games against the Maple Leafs this season.

"It was good, I kind of knew what to expect," Price said. "It was a pretty fast-paced game. It would have been a good one to watch, I would imagine. They had some good scoring chances, Toskala played well and they got the two points."

Kovalev halved the deficit 6:20 into the third period, accepting a feed from Plekanec and beating Toskala on a breakaway for his 25th goal.

Tucker added an empty-netter with 29 seconds remaining to seal the win.

"Anytime Montreal and Toronto play, it doesn't matter where the teams are in the standings. It's a playoff type of atmosphere, and you can feel it in the dressing room," Sundin said. "I think for us, the big thing was, we were embarrassed at home against Florida and we wanted to make sure to show people that we were a better team than that.

"I thought we came back and showed we had some character with a good game tonight."

The Maple Leafs again were without their second-leading scorer in Nik Antropov, who served the final game of his league-imposed three-game suspension for throwing his stick at officials in last Thursday's 3-2 overtime loss at Carolina.

Toronto did welcome back defenseman Bryan McCabe, who returned to the lineup after missing the last seven weeks due to injury.

McCabe, who suffered a broken left hand on December 15 on a hit by Montreal's Andrei Kostitsyn, had one shot on goal in 23 minutes, 14 seconds of ice time.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 2 1 4
    MONTREAL 1 0 1 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 20 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV)
    11:09
    TOR - KRIS NEWBURY 1 (DOMINIC MOORE, BOYD DEVEREAUX) 17:24
    2ND PRD: TOR - DARCY TUCKER 7 (MATT STAJAN, JASON BLAKE) 1:24
    TOR - (PP) KYLE WELLWOOD 6 (TOMAS

    Feb 7 9:38 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 4
    MONTREAL 2
    3RD PRD: TOR - (EN) DARCY TUCKER 8 (UNASSISTED) 19:31

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 9:37 PM
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    RUWTbot Took away 17 roots

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 9:37 PM
  • 37
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    RUWTbot Added 17 roots (Close Finish)

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 9:30 PM
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    McTool Added 5 roots

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 9:26 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 3
    MONTREAL 2
    3RD PRD: MON - ALEXEI KOVALEV 25 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, JOSH GORGES) 6:20

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 9:06 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 2 3
    MONTREAL 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 20 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV)
    11:09
    TOR - KRIS NEWBURY 1 (DOMINIC MOORE, BOYD DEVEREAUX) 17:24
    2ND PRD: TOR - DARCY TUCKER 7 (MATT STAJAN, JASON BLAKE) 1:24
    TOR - (PP) KYLE WELL

    Feb 7 8:37 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 3
    MONTREAL 1
    2ND PRD: TOR - (PP) KYLE WELLWOOD 6 (TOMAS KABERLE, MATS SUNDIN) 19:36

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 8:36 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    MONTREAL 1
    2ND PRD: TOR - DARCY TUCKER 7 (MATT STAJAN, JASON BLAKE) 1:24

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 8:04 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1
    MONTREAL 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 20 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV)
    11:09
    TOR - KRIS NEWBURY 1 (DOMINIC MOORE, BOYD DEVEREAUX) 17:24
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TOR 14

    Feb 7 7:44 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    MONTREAL 1
    1ST PRD: TOR - KRIS NEWBURY 1 (DOMINIC MOORE, BOYD DEVEREAUX) 17:24

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 7:42 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 0
    MONTREAL 1
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 20 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV) 11:09

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 7 7:29 PM
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