The Bruins came up short in Toronto on Saturday night, falling to the Auston Matthews-less Toronto Maple Leafs 4-3 at Air Canada Centre. Ron Hainsey scored the game-winner for the Leafs with just 1:23 left in the third period, and officials upheld the goal after a review for goaltender interference.
Leafs forward Zach Hyman lightly pushed Charlie McAvoy into Tuukka Rask, impeding the goaltender’s path across the crease right before Hainsey’s point shot found the back of the net. But the officials determined that there wasn’t enough evidence to overturn the crucial call.
The controversial deciding call will get much of the attention for the Bruins’ loss. But ultimately, the Leafs out-shot the Bruins 36-23 and cashed in on 2-of-3 power play opportunities.
Brad Marchand opened the scoring in the first period when he fired a wrist shot from the slot off the pass from David Pastrnak.
However, the Bruins quickly coughed up the lead as Mitchell Marner took a nifty cross-ice feed from William Nylander and wristed it into the nearly wide-open net.
The Leafs briefly held a 2-1 lead in the first, after Nazem Kardi buried his 22nd goal of the season off an unbelievable redirect pass by James van Riemsdyk. Defenseman Brandon Carlo locked in on Marner from the point and lost Kadri on the play.
Marchand tied the game back up when he scored his second of the night to make it 2-2. Patrice Bergeron made an outstanding play to gain the puck and fire it down low to David Pastrnak. He quickly fed it out front to Marchand, who roofed it for his 24th of the season.
Rookie Jake DeBrusk put the Bruins back on top early in the second frame, as Ryan Spooner threaded a perfect pass in front from the half-boards. And DeBrusk got a perfect tip to nab his 12th goal of the season.
Despite the way his game ended with the goal and lost goaltender interference challenge, Rask came up with plenty of big saves on the night – especially in the second period, when the Leafs out-shot the Bruins 15-2. He had this particularly impressive sequence against Jake Gardiner and Tyler Bozak:
The Bruins (37-14-8) are now one point behind the Leafs in the Atlantic Division, but have five games in hand. The B’s have a quick turnaround as they head to Buffalo to face the Sabres on Sunday.
UPDATE: The Boston Herald’s Steve Conroy tweeted after the game that Patrice Bergeron left the Air Canada Centre in a walking boot. It’s likely related to the center taking a puck to his leg or foot area in the second period.
— By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at email@example.com.