NHL Hockey

3
Final 1 2 3 OT SO Tot
Toronto 0 3 0 0 0 3
Minnesota 1 2 0 0 1 4
4
4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET22:00 BRT, December 4, 2021
Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota  Attendance: 18,568

Leafs seek club-record eighth straight road win at Minnesota

Toronto Maple Leafs at Minnesota Wild

  1. The Maple Leafs and Wild have met 12 times since the start of the 2014-15 season. Minnesota has gone 8-4 over that span but are losers of the last two straight games. Six of the twelve games were decided by one goal, but the Leafs won 4-1 in the last meeting, the largest goal differential between the two teams since a 4-1 win by Toronto in 2013.
  2. Toronto beat the Avalanche, 8-3, on Wednesday night extending their winning streak to five. This is Toronto's third separate streak of five wins this season. Eleven other teams have had a win streak of five or more games, but no other team has done it more than once.
  3. Auston Matthews tallied three goals in his last game against Colorado, his fourth career hat-trick. It also marks his 42nd multi-goal game, the second most in the NHL since he came into the league in 2016-17 (Ovechkin is first with 45). Toronto is 31-3-8 (.833) when Matthews scores two or more goals.
  4. Minnesota beat New Jersey on Thursday night, 5-2, extending its winning streak to five games, the longest of the season. They have outscored opponents by 14 goals over the last four games, tied for the highest goal differential over four games in Wild history (also 14 February of 2021).
  5. Kirill Kaprizov tallied two goals and an assist in his last game against the Devils, bringing his point total to 28 on the season, tied for fifth most in the NHL. His 28 points through 23 games played is the fastest in Wild franchise history (Mikko Koivu reached 28 points through 24 games in 2008-09).
  6. Michael Bunting tallied three assists against the Avalanche, the second three-point game in his career (three goals vs. Los Angeles on Apr. 5, 2021). His 17 points are tied for second place among rookies with Trevor Zegras. Only Lucas Raymond has more (22).

The Toronto Maple Leafs will be going for a team-record eighth consecutive road win Saturday night when they play the Minnesota Wild in St. Paul, Minn.

The Maple Leafs, who are on a five-game winning streak overall, have won 15 of their past 17 after trouncing the visiting Colorado Avalanche 8-3 on Wednesday behind Auston Matthews' fourth career hat trick.

They will be facing a high-scoring Minnesota team that has won five straight after defeating the visiting New Jersey Devils 5-2 on Thursday night.

Toronto has won seven consecutive road games during three other seasons -- 2002-03, 1960-61 and 1940-41.

"We have a really good sense right now of the way we need to play," Maple Leafs captain John Tavares said. "You just never feel settled or comfortable. You want to keep going and understand what is bringing you success."

Before defeating Colorado, Toronto had completed a four-game trip with the final three of the games on the West Coast.

Sometimes teams struggle in their first game back after a long trip, but the Maple Leafs started quickly on Wednesday. William Nylander scored 4:31 into the game and they led 3-1 after the first period.

"I liked our start for sure," Toronto coach Sheldon Keefe said. "We thought we needed to start quickly in the game and, obviously, playing with the lead is important."

During practice on Friday, Mitchell Marner and Jake Muzzin collided during a drill. After a heated exchange between the two, Marner left the practice early with a trainer.

"Precautionary," Keefe said. "We'll see how he is in the morning. It's not looking like anything serious at this point. He's going to travel and all that stuff and prepare to play."

As for the exchange, Keefe said: "I was told there was a little bit of an exchange. ... but, especially those two guys, I don't worry about that kind of stuff at all. Things happen out there. ... Our team's really close and that kind of stuff will be shaken off pretty quickly."

Kirill Kaprizov continued his strong play for the Wild with two goals and an assist on Thursday.

"His legs are really good right now," Wild coach Dean Evason said. "He's playing with such pace, and when he does that, he must be so hard to defend."

He has scored three or more points in a game four times this season. He has six goals and 11 assists since Nov. 18 after a slow start. He has nine goals and 19 assists for the season.

"To be honest, I didn't change much," Kaprizov said through a translator. "When I wasn't scoring, I didn't want to change anything. I wanted to stick to my game and that's what I've done. Obviously, it's just going in now, and that's the difference."

Ryan Hartman added a goal and two assists for the Wild on Thursday.

The Wild still were without captain Jared Spurgeon (lower-body injury) and winger Frederick Gaudreau (COVID-19 protocol) on Thursday. It was unclear whether either will be available for the game on Saturday.

Ondrej Kase (upper-body injury) could return Saturday for Toronto.

Toronto assigned goaltender Petr Mrazek (groin) to the Marlies (AHL) on a conditioning loan.

Forward Kirill Semyonov cleared waivers on Thursday, allowing Toronto to terminate his contract so that he can return to the KHL.

--Field Level Media

Updated December 3, 2021

Sports Data API Powered by STATS © 2022 by STATS PERFORM.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS PERFORM is strictly prohibited.