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Sundin Nets Point 1000 In Leafs Win

Tuesday, 11.03.2003 / 12:09 AM / News
Toronto Maple Leafs
Scoresheet | Game Statistics

EDMONTON, Alberta (Ticker) -- Mats Sundin reached a milestone and helped the Toronto Maple Leafs end their longest winless streak of the season.

Sundin scored the eventual game-winner with 5:48 remaining as the Maple Leafs came to life in the third period and rallied for a 3-2 triumph over the Edmonton Oilers.

Held to nine shots over two periods, Toronto tallied twice in the opening minute of the third to take the lead. Sundin made it 3-1, becoming the third player this season to reach the 1,000-point mark.

"At this time of year, we're trying to focus on winning hockey games, but it has been in the back of my mind," said Sundin, the fifth player to record his 1,000th point in a Leafs' uniform.

"It's kind of nice to get it out of the way because it was starting to become a distraction to the whole team for the last five or six games."

The 31st goal of the season for the Maple Leafs' captain became his seventh game-winner when Mike Comrie scored with eight seconds left.

Alexander Mogilny and defenceman Tomas Kaberle had the other goals for Toronto, which ended an 0-3-1 stretch and climbed within three points of fourth-place Philadelphia in the Eastern Conference.

"The bottom line is we got a win out of it," said defenceman Glen Wesley, who made his Maple Leafs' debut one day after he was acquired from Carolina. "We didn't play our best hockey, but it was nice to get that first game out of the way."

Edmonton remained five points in front of Nashville for the final playoff spot in the West after its four-game unbeaten streak was stopped.

"How do you see that coming?" Oilers coach Craig MacTavish asked. "We play two periods flawlessly, we've got a great game going, all systems are go and it's going to be a real building block for the team. We win the opening faceoff and self-destruct in one minute."

Mogilny started the Leafs' comeback 16 seconds into the final period. Nik Antropov stole the puck from defenceman Eric Brewer and set up Mogilny for his 28th goal.

Just 38 seconds later, Owen Nolan was knocked down by defenceman Steve Staios but got up and passed from behind the net.

Kaberle broke in from the blue line and put a one-timer from the edge of the left faceoff circle past goaltender Tommy Salo for his eighth goal.

"What happened is we didn't come out prepared to play at the start of the third period," Oilers center Todd Marchant said.

"We played as solid a game as we've played in the last while here and earned a lesson that against a team like that, all it takes is a couple of miscues to cost you a game."

Sundin added an insurance goal when he came out from behind the net and slid a backhander under Salo.

"The first and second, we didn't play as well as we can," Sundin said. "Edmonton checks pretty well and didn't give us a lot of room on the breakouts. We just tried to play with a little more emotion and desperation, and it turned out to be the key to a much better third period."

Comrie put his own rebound past Ed Belfour with time running out, but it was not enough for Edmonton, which squandered a chance to pad its lead over the Predators.
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