Marincin helps Maple Leafs defeat Canucks, pad lead for third in Atlantic
Martin Marincin scored his first goal of the season 18 seconds into the third period to break a tie and help the Toronto Maple Leafs defeat the Vancouver Canucks 4-2 at Scotiabank Arena on Saturday.
The defenseman skated into the zone and shot from the high slot and hit the post. He followed that shot and put the rebound past Thatcher Demko to give the Maple Leafs a 3-2 lead.
“I just got a great pass from John Tavares and I had pretty good speed so I felt like it would be a pretty good chance for a shot and I tried and it went in,” Marincin said. “I was so happy, my first goal this season, so I was excited for that, and it made it 3-2 for us early in third period, it was good for our team too.”
Auston Matthews scored his 45th goal of the season, and Frederik Andersen made 25 saves for the Maple Leafs (35-23-8), who have won three in a row since losing 6-3 to emergency backup goalie Dave Ayres and the Carolina Hurricanes on Feb. 22. Toronto leads the Florida Panthers by five points for third place in the Atlantic Division.
“We’ve really bought in the way we want to play lately,” Andersen said. “Guys have been doing some great jobs blocking shots. We’ve been playing really tight as a group, so our resiliency has been great.”
Demko made 26 saves for the Canucks (34-24-6), who are 4-3-1 in their past eight games and trail the Edmonton Oilers by two points for second place in the Pacific Division.
“It was a good game by our team, we played a good road game and battled back,” Vancouver coach Travis Green said. “It was a bit of an unlucky goal the third one, but it was good response from our team coming into a tough building against a good team. I thought we did a lot of good things today.”
Matthews put Toronto up 2-1 when he shot from the left face-off dot at 6:25 of the first period.
“I’ve taken a similar route a couple of times before and haven’t shot the puck,” Matthews said. “Rewatching it, I’ve been thinking to see if I could slide one in there, so I just threw it at the net and hoped for the best.”
They said it
“We created enough to be able to score more goals, but it is what it is. I have to be better too, I’m not playing my best hockey now. It’s everywhere (I need to be better). We’re still good in the standings but we can’t accept playing good and still losing. We have to win games and get points.” — Canucks forward Elias Pettersson
“Unbelievable, Marty’s goal. Every guy on the bench was smiling and laughing. Me and Justin Holl looked at each other in disbelief, but great for him. It’s awesome, especially the timing. For Marty to get that as the game-winner, it makes it even funnier now looking back on it. Gauthier had an unbelievable game too, flying around and throwing the body and playing like we want him to play, and he makes a big difference when he’s doing that. Him and Marty getting on the score sheet, it’s a memorable one for sure.” — Maple Leafs defenseman Travis Dermott
Need to know
Marincin last scored an NHL goal March 15, 2019 (28 games). … Canucks forward Tyler Toffoli had a six-game point streak end, including his first four games with Vancouver after being traded by the Los Angeles Kings. He had 10 points (eight goals, two assists). … Canucks defenseman Quinn Hughes had a five-game point streak end (seven assists). … Canucks forward J.T. Miller had a four-game point streak end (eight points; three goals, five assists). … Canucks defenseman Alexander Edler extended his point streak to five games (seven points; one goal, six assists). … Tavares extended his point streak to five games (seven points; three goals, four assists). … Florida lost to the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 in a shootout earlier Saturday.
Canucks: At the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN+, SN, FS-O, NHL.TV)
Maple Leafs: At the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday (10:30 p.m. ET; ESPN+, NBCSCA, SNO, NHL.TV)
Victory over Vancouver!
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) March 1, 2020