The Toronto Maple Leafs came from behind last night to beat the New York Rangers by a score of 3-2 in overtime. Pontus Holmberg and Timothy Liljegren had the goals in regulation for Toronto, who moved their record to 30-11-8 on the season. Mitch Marner capped the scoring with the overtime winner.
It was a game of three periods. The Maple Leafs got a goal from Pontus Holmberg early in the game to go up by a score of 1-0. Then the Rangers took over the game, scoring two goals in the second to go up by one. The Maple Leafs came back hard in the third period, but Igor Shersterkin stopped shot after shot.
However, just before the third period ended, Liljegren pinched in when the Maple Leafs were putting strong pressure on the Rangers. His goal tied the score at 2-2. Then, Marner put on a beautiful move to skate through the entire Rangers’ team. His shot beat Shersterkin in a quick overtime score to cap off the team’s comeback.
This was a matchup of Eastern Conference contenders, with both teams fighting for a spot in the playoffs. It was a good back-and-forth game.
Takeaway One: Ilya Samsonson Has Fourth Straight Solid Game
Ilya Samsonov started in goal last night. It was his fifth start in a row, and he’s been solid in each game. He’s now won four of his past five games; and, on the season, he’s moved his record to 16-4-2, with a goals-against-average of 2.20, and a save percentage of .921.
Samsonov also improved his record on home ice to 14-0-1. He has not lost in regulation all season long in front of Toronto fans in Scotiabank Arena.
Related: Maple Leafs’ Forgotten Ones: Dion Phaneuf
Takeaway Two: Mitch Marner Wins With a Great Move in Overtime
Mitch Marner scored the game-winning goal 19 seconds into overtime. After the tough regulation-time battle, this goal seemed relatively easy. The Maple Leafs won the faceoff at center ice and, after Marner got the puck, he weaved his way past all three Rangers skaters.
Cutting hard across the crease, he then tucked his 18th goal into the left side of the net over an outstretched Shesterkin. The winning goal was quick and almost anti-climatic. But it was a victory for the Maple Leafs.
Related: Three Takeaways from Maple Leafs’ 5-2 Win Over the Islanders
Takeaway Three: Timothy Liljegren Has Second Multiple-Point Game of the Season
Timothy Liljegren pinched at just the right time to pick up a loose puck and fire it over the pads of Shersterkin for the game-tying goal. His fortunate move resulted in a third-period comeback to move the game into overtime.
Liljegren also added an assist on Marner’s game-winning goal in overtime. It was his second multiple-point game of the season. The 23-year-old right-shot defenseman had scored two goals against the Vegas Golden Knights on November 8.
Takeaway Four: John Tavares Has Second Straight Solid Game
John Tavares had his second-straight solid game. He was dominant all night long and even rang a puck off the goalpost with just seconds left in the game. He fired shot after shot on the Rangers’ net – eight in total. But, in the end, he had just one assist in the game.
However, it was the second game in a row that he’d totaled eight shots on the opposition’s net. The assist was Tavares’ 48th point in his 49 games this season. He ranks fourth on the team in scoring.
Related: HOW CAN MAPLE LEAFS’ FANS NOT LIKE CONOR TIMMINS?
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January 26, 2023 at 7:34 am
It was a really good game, but I did think that in the second period the Leafs didn’t match the energy of the Rangers, but especially the last half of the third period they had more chances to even win the game in regulation. That goal of Marner in overtime looked like the goal that Bobby Orr scored that is the iconic picture of him flying through the air, that is what Marner’s goal reminded me of.
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