Montreal Canadiens victorious in shootout over Toronto Maple Leafs
Ryan Poehling scored a hat trick, before adding the winner in the shootout on his NHL debut. Ensuring the Canadiens beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-5 in the final game of the regular season for both sides.
Andrew Shaw and Jordan Weal were also on the scoresheet for Montreal. The Canadiens were eliminated from playoff contention on prior to Saturday’s fixture.
Charlie Lindgren stopped 44 shots, of 49 faced in his first game of the season. Lindgren replaced Carey Price; who had appeared in the previous 13 fixtures.
Price finished the campaign with a 35-24-6 record. Also, he has a .918 save percentage.
Jake Gardiner, Zach Hyman, Trevor Moore, Kasperi Kapanen, and William Nylander were on the scoresheet for Toronto. The Leafs will come up against the Boston Bruins in the opening round of the playoffs.
Frederik Andersen starred for the Leafs and finished with 44 stops.
Poehling scored the winner in the shootout on the Canadiens fourth shot. This came after John Tavares missed out on the chance to win it for Toronto. Poehling was Montreal’s first pick in the 2017 draft and has recently concluded his third NCAA season at St. Cloud State.
The shot count at the beginning of overtime was all level; both teams recorded 49 shots each. Meaning it was a new record for combined shots in a game for the Canadiens.
The Canadiens become the final team to be eliminated from playoff contention when the Blue Jackets beat the New York Ranger on Friday evening. The Jackets were successful via shootout. Montreal have now missed out on the post-season tournament for the consecutive seasons; the first time that this has happened since 2001.
The Maple Leafs started quickly and led 2-0 after the first period. Hyman’s no-look shot crossed the line off Shea Weber’s skate. Following this, Gardiner extended the lead at 8:03.
Poehling netted his first NHL goal on his fourth career shift at 11:41. He went hard to the net before ramming the puck past Andersen.
Minn scored his second of the fixture to level it. He converted a simple tap-in at 2:56 of the second period.
Montreal grabbed their first lead of the game. As Weal scored a power-play goal with just over seven minutes remaining of the second.
The traveling side leveled up the scores less than two minutes after when Moore scored his second of the season on a partial breakaway.
Shaw then gave Montreal a 4-3 lead. This came after he completed a give-and-go with Artturi Lehkonen and Max Domi.
Following this, Nylander leveled the scores at 4-4. This occurred on a wraparound after Lindgren overcommitted on the left.
Auston Mattews then set up Kapanen to put the Leafs back ahead with only 12 minutes to play.
However, the Leafs weren’t able to hand on, as Poehling completed his hat-trick with only 2:31 remaining.
With an eye on the playoffs, Toronto rested four of their top defencemen with one eye on the playoffs. Jake Muzzin Ron Hainsey, Travis Dermott, and Nikita Zaitsev all missed out on the trip.
Meanwhile, legendary broadcaster Bob Cole called his final game of a 50-year career.