Leafs beat Blackhawks for 1st time since 2003

By
Updated: December 15, 2013

Toronto, ON (SportsNetwork.com) – Joffrey Lupul posted two goals and two
assists as the Toronto Maple Leafs thumped the Chicago Blackhawks 7-3.

Peter Holland had two goals and an assist, while Mason Raymond added four
helpers for the Maple Leafs, who snapped a three-game slide. Jonathan Bernier
gave up three goals on 28 shots in the win.

“We seemed to click tonight,” Holland said. “Obviously getting that first one
kind of kick-started things for us and it just kind of seemed we kept finding
each other all night. We had a lot of fun playing together tonight.”

Toronto broke an eight-game losing streak to Chicago, beating the Blackhawks
for the first time since a 3-1 victory on Feb. 12, 2003.

Patrick Kane scored twice and Brandon Saad also lit the lamp for the
Blackhawks, who had a three-game winning streak snapped.

“We were probably looking for an easy game, thinking we were going to score
six goals and that’s not going to happen in this league,” coach Joel
Quenneville said. “We had a lot of fortunate goals over that stretch and I
think we let our guard down tonight and got what we deserved.”

Antti Raanta played the first two periods and gave up five goals on 25 shots.
Kent Simpson allowed two goals on seven shots in the third in his NHL debut.

Toronto drew first blood at the 7:14 mark of the first period on the power
play as Lupul attempted a pass at the low left side that was blocked, but he
got it back and his second attempt made it through to the right where Holland
whipped it in.

Chicago answered nine minutes later with a power-play goal of its own as Kane
tried to send a pass from right to left, but it went off the stick of Dion
Phaneuf and snuck past Bernier.

The Leafs went back on top 42 seconds into the second as a rush play saw
Nikolai Kulemin send a shot on net that was stopped, but Jerry D’Amigo was
there to tap in the rebound for his first career goal.

Toronto then made it a 3-1 game at 12:09 of the second. Lupul brought the puck
in at the right point and sent a lead pass to Raymond, who skated down to the
circle and sent it to the left side where Holland one-timed it home.

Chicago made it a one-goal game at 13:30 as Niklas Hjalmarsson pushed a
turnover in the neutral zone to Kane, who skated to the right circle and
wristed one home for his 19th of the season.

The Leafs, though, answered just over a minute later as Kulemin finished off a
nice play with a wrister from the right circle, and it was a 5-2 game thanks
to another power-play goal that saw Jake Gardiner’s shot from the right point
tipped in by Lupul with 2:52 to play in the second period.

Lupul potted his second of the game just 28 seconds into the third, while Saad
and Phil Kessel exchanged goals 57 seconds apart later in the third to cap the
scoring.

Game Notes

Toronto plays in Pittsburgh on Monday … Chicago hosts Los Angeles on Sunday
… Toronto went 2-for-4 on the power play, while Chicago was 1-for-2 … Carl
Gunnarsson had two assists for Toronto.