for this game

Blake, Maple Leafs breeze past Canadiens

Feb 8, 2009 - 4:43 AM
MONTREAL (Ticker) -- Jason Blake continued his hot play at the expense of the Montreal Canadiens.

Blake scored a pair of goals in the third period as the Toronto Maple Leafs recorded a 5-2 triumph over the Canadiens on Saturday in a battle of Canada's "Original Six" rivals.

Defenseman Luke Schenn netted his first NHL goal and fellow rookie Nikolai Kulemin and blue-liner Jeff Finger also tallied for Toronto, which improved to 3-2-1 since the All-Star break.

"In order for us to win - we're not a San Jose or Detroit type of team - we need to play the way we can play," Blake said. "That means we need to use our speed, make simple plays and get on the forecheck and shoot the puck. I thought (tonight), it was a great team effort."

Dominic Moore and Niklas Hagman notched two assists apiece and Vesa Toskala turned aside 31 shots for the Maple Leafs.

"I really don't care about what's going on on the outside, I'm just focused on playing and focused on doing my best on the ice," Toskala said. "Every game is important. I try to give our team a chance to win every night. That was the fifth game in a row that I got points, and I'm pretty happy with that."

"I thought (Toskala) was outstanding," Blake said. "We had a lot of penalties to kill off, like (a) 5-on-3. He was the big difference in the hockey game."

Rookie Matt D'Agostini scored a power-play goal and Tom Kostopoulos also tallied for Montreal, which fell to 2-7-0 in its last nine games - scoring two or fewer goals six times during that stretch.

"We talked about it yesterday, we talked about it the last couple of weeks - it was the same thing in September," Montreal coach Guy Carbonneau said. "If you want to compete in this league, you need to score some goals, but you need to play well defensively and have solid goaltending.

"We've had that at times, but right now, we're struggling on every front. We seem to have a tough time scoring goals, and every time we make a mistake, it seems to end up in the back of our net, so it's not a good combination."

All-Star Carey Price made 36 saves for the Canadiens.

"I feel fine, it's just not going the way I planned. I have to find a way around it," said Price, who was playing in place of an ill Jaroslav Halak. "It comes down to wanting it more, having to compete harder every night. There's no excuse for letting in five goals every night. I've got to find a way to fix this."

Canadiens All-Star defenseman Mike Komisarek refused to point the finger at Price.

"He's been one of the best goalies in the league. It doesn't fall on one guy," Komisarek said. "It falls on the six defensemen, it falls on the 12 forwards, it falls on every single guy in this locker room, not just one guy.

"Price has been awesome. We're not giving him goals or offering him support with leads. We're always playing from behind. We showed early on in the season what type of team we are. We still have some time here to figure it out and get on the same page."

With his team nursing a 2-1 lead, Blake gave the Maple Leafs some breathing room in the third period.

Blake received a pass from Niklas Hagman in the left faceoff circle and unleashed a shot that beat Price at 3:07 of the session.

The 35-year-old Blake added his second of the night just over six minutes later. After skating up the right wing, he wristed a shot that sailed just under the crossbar at 9:13 for his 19th goal of the season and sixth in seven games.

Although Kostopoulos trimmed the deficit back to two nearly two minutes later, Finger restored Toronto's three-goal lead with 64 seconds remaining by wristing a shot from the right circle past Price.

Toronto coach Ron Wilson was pleased with his team's continuous pressure.

"We directed a lot of rubber at the net tonight to try to wear the goalie down," Wilson said. "(Price) played last night and they had a tough game in Buffalo, so we were able to dictate the first period. But we got in penalty trouble in the second. It took a lot of energy from us, but we made a lot of smart plays in the third period to take control."

Playing in his 41st career game, Schenn opened the scoring with 5:23 remaining in the first period, when he collected a loose puck in the right circle and wristed it between the pads of Price.

D'Agostini knotted the contest 25 seconds into the middle session with his team on a 5-on-3 advantage, but Kulemin regained the lead 2:12 later, taking a pass from Lee Stempniak in the slot and wristing the puck just inside the right goalpost for his eighth tally of the campaign.






  • 48
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    MattDOOM777 Added 5 roots

    Maple Leafs 5, Canadiens 2  FinalFeb 8 12:29 AM


  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1 3 5
    MONTREAL 0 1 1 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - LUKE SCHENN 1 (JOHN MITCHELL, MIKE VAN RYN) 14:37
    2ND PRD: MON - (PP) MATT D'AGOSTINI 9 (ANDREI MARKOV, ALEXEI KOVALEV)
    0:25
    TOR - NIKOLAI KULEMIN 8 (LEE STEMPNIAK, PAVEL KUBINA) 2:37
    3RD PRD: TOR - JASON BLAKE

    Feb 7 9:53 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 5
    MONTREAL 2
    3RD PRD: TOR - JEFF FINGER 4 (DOMINIC MOORE) 18:56

    Maple Leafs 5, Canadiens 2  3rd - 1:04Feb 7 9:47 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 4
    MONTREAL 2
    3RD PRD: MON - TOM KOSTOPOULOS 5 (MAXIM LAPIERRE) 11:02

    Maple Leafs 4, Canadiens 2  3rd - 8:58Feb 7 9:31 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 4
    MONTREAL 1
    3RD PRD: TOR - JASON BLAKE 19 (DOMINIC MOORE, NIKLAS HAGMAN) 9:13

    Maple Leafs 4, Canadiens 1  3rd - 10:47Feb 7 9:29 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 3
    MONTREAL 1
    3RD PRD: TOR - JASON BLAKE 18 (NIKLAS HAGMAN) 3:07

    Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 1  3rd - 16:53Feb 7 9:18 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1 2
    MONTREAL 0 1 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - LUKE SCHENN 1 (JOHN MITCHELL, MIKE VAN RYN) 14:37
    2ND PRD: MON - (PP) MATT D'AGOSTINI 9 (ANDREI MARKOV, ALEXEI KOVALEV)
    0:25
    TOR - NIKOLAI KULEMIN 8 (LEE STEMPNIAK, PAVEL KUBINA) 2:37
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Feb 7 8:56 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 33 roots

    Maple Leafs 2, Canadiens 1  2nd - 10:00Feb 7 8:36 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    MONTREAL 1
    2ND PRD: TOR - NIKOLAI KULEMIN 8 (LEE STEMPNIAK, PAVEL KUBINA) 2:37

    Maple Leafs 2, Canadiens 1  2nd - 17:23Feb 7 8:21 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    MONTREAL 1
    2ND PRD: MON - (PP) MATT D'AGOSTINI 9 (ANDREI MARKOV, ALEXEI KOVALEV)
    0:25

    Maple Leafs 1, Canadiens 1  2nd - 19:35Feb 7 8:13 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1
    MONTREAL 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - LUKE SCHENN 1 (JOHN MITCHELL, MIKE VAN RYN) 14:37
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TOR 18 18
    MON 5 5
    GOALIES: TOR - VESA TOSKALA
    MON

    Feb 7 7:54 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    MONTREAL 0
    1ST PRD: TOR - LUKE SCHENN 1 (JOHN MITCHELL, MIKE VAN RYN) 14:37

    Maple Leafs 1, Canadiens 0  1st - 5:23Feb 7 7:45 PM
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    Koitiz Added 5 roots

    Maple Leafs 0, Canadiens 0  1st - 11:39Feb 7 7:31 PM
  • 5
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    shopgirl Added 5 roots

    Maple Leafs vs. CanadiensFeb 5 9:47 AM