Mixing the running and gunning that was not seen in the first two games of this National Hockey League playoff series with lots of close calls in their own end, the Leafs took a 4-2 win Monday night.
Babcock is nothing if not stubborn.
While Babcock did an obviously great job pulling his top talents away from Bergeron, his move to put Tomas Plekanec on Bergeron's unit was far from a success.
Centre Dominic Moore will take Komarov's spot in the lineup. The team that won Game 3 has gone on to win that series in all but two of those 14 series. He alone has nine points in Boston's two victories, while linemates Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand have contributed another 11 to give the trio 20 points in the series. Seeing your guys go into the playoffs, you just have to reset, " he said.
By comparison, Boston's top line is outscoring the Maple Leafs' top line by 18 points and unless Matthews and Nylander can find their game in Toronto this series might not make it back to Boston. Game time is yet to be determined. He did come back to play, and the reports after the game make it sound like he will be playing on Thursday.
In a 2-0 hole and needing Andersen to step up in the worst possible way, the Maple Leafs netminder had a flawless opening frame before briefly turning into Swiss cheese during a three-minute span in the second.
The Matthews line was much better and kept the Bruins on the defensive in the early going and then hit its stride in the second period.
But in reality, the B's also knew that at some point the youthful speed and skill of the Leafs would be a factor in this best-of-seven tussle.
Each team had just one power-play chance and the Leafs scored on their only opportunity in the first period.
James Van Riemsdyk, Leafs Forward says, "We're upbeat". Frederik Andersen was spectacular, making save after save on what looked liked for sure goals. His teammates were feeding him the puck, but he was unable to get it past Andersen. It was the first time in the series the Leafs scored first.
A few seconds later, Marleau and Marner got the lead back for the Leafs on a nice two-on-one with Marleau finishing on a great pass from Marner.
Auston Matthews finally got going and scored what would be the game-winner late in the second period while the Bruins' top line, so explosive in the first two games, was held off the scoresheet. Likely taking exception to a slew foot of Marchand in the third, Rielly went at the Bruins pest with a cross check after a whistle and the latter responded with a baseball type swing that didn't connect.
- Bruins forward Jake DeBrusk created several scoring chances, including one where he went past multiple Leafs to set up David Krejci with a good look in front of crease. Had it not been for goals from Adam McQuaid and Zdeno Chara - the two goal scorers we all expected to step up and lead the charge in this game, I'm sure - 3-0 would have felt like 6-0 after 40 minutes of action.