Monday, 17 December, 2018

Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings - Game Recap

Tavares gets first hat trick with Maple Leafs in win against Blackhawks Matthews, Toews, Bishop named NHL's 3 stars of opening week
Cassandra Castillo | 13 October, 2018, 14:07

Auston Matthews heard the short list of National Hockey League greats he joined by scoring nine times in the first five games of the season. "He's a big man".

NOTES: Matthews has scored two goals in three games this season.

Being able to anticipate what's coming and get his shot off so quickly has always been a staple of Matthews' game, but he's evolved that even further to require seemingly no time at all to pick his spot on net and surprise goaltenders with an even faster release than before. "I think it's more important to move on". While they have had no struggles scoring goals, the Stars have also been excellent defensively with just one goal allowed through their first two wins. As the game wore on, the Leafs got key contributions from Kapanen and Zach Hyman winning races to the puck to negate icings, both of which resulted in goals (for Ron Hainsey and Tavares respectively).

Toronto (2-1-0, 4 points) has gotten both wins in overtime, the latest Sunday night at United Center in a free-wheeling 7-6 defeat of the Chicago Blackhawks. Toronto has scored at least seven goals in consecutive games for the third time in the past 20 years (Dec. 19-21, 1998 and October 4-7, 2017). Connor Brown added an empty-net goal at 16:40.

"It was probably fun for the fans, a lot of entertainment out there", Babcock said. "We didn't take care of the puck as good and we didn't keep our foot on the gas".

Solid, if not spectacular, Andersen made the saves Toronto needed and was helped by the outpouring of offence generated in front of him, as well as a more cohesive defensive showing.

"We have to do a better job killing penalties than we did tonight", Stars coach Jim Montgomery said.

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That might not happen in their next game though as Toronto continues its road trip against the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night.

"It's great for the all the guys who are doing some scoring right now", Babcock said. They make it hard on you. It doesn't really matter who does the scoring as long as you find a way to win.

Matthews has been lights out to start the new campaign, recording five goals and three assists in the Maple Leafs' first three games. The Red Wings announced before the game they will retire Hall of Famer Red Kelly's No. 4 jersey on February 1, 2019, when they host Toronto. Toronto retired his jersey two years ago.

Aside from National Hockey League 19, members of FaZe Clan will compete in Fortnite squad games alongside Maple Leafs players and fans in attendance.

Stars: Conclude their season-opening four-game homestand against Anaheim on Saturday.

Red Wings: Play at Boston on Saturday.

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