Matthew Iaboni March 6, 2010
The Maple Leafs had several chances to win the game in regulation but they couldn't beat Pascal Leclaire who was brilliant for the Senators.
In the shootout Jonas Gustavsson stopped Alexei Kovalev. Phil Kessel was the first Leafs' shooter and despite starting wide and without much speed, Kessel used some nifty moves to slide the puck past Leclaire. Jason Spezza was stopped and Nikolai Kulemin had the clincher.
Leafs' record this season in shootouts.
A new season-high in ice-time for Leafs defenceman Dion Phaneuf.
Straight wins for the Leafs over the Senators.
Fights that Colton Orr and Matt Carkner have gotten into this season.
Phil Kessel has been a thorn in the side of the Senators his entire career. Heading into the game, Kessel has more goals (11) and points (16) against Ottawa then any other club. This season in only four games, he has five goals and six points.
Saturday he was dangerous every time he had the puck. He scored the Leafs goal in regulation on a nice toe-drag and in the shootout he scored the winner on a great move.
Nikolai Kulemin has been one of the better Maple Leafs this season and that was no different Saturday against Ottawa.
Playing on a line with Kessel and Tyler Bozak, Kulemin who is very good in the corners and also had several chances to score but was denied until the shootout. Kulemin had season highs in ice-time 20:27 and shots six while also dishing out a hit and seeing 6:49 of power play time.
An area that the Leafs will need to work on over the last 18 games is the power play. The Leafs have gone 0-for-the-last 19 and that included a chance late in the game Saturday with a two-man advantage.
The Leafs first power play unit seems to have all the pieces to be effective. A great passer in Tomas Kaberle, a big gunner in Dion Phaneuf and a sharp shooter in Kessel.
Ron Wilson on the hit on John Mitchell:
"In the Olympics you get a 10-minute misconduct and possibly get kicked out,” said Wilson. “Those are the hits that we've got to do a better job on, or have a penalty for a hit to the head."
Sunday March 7 @ Flyers 7 PM ET (Sportsnet, AM640)
The Maple Leafs close out their three-game road trip against the Flyers in the CIty Of Brotherly Love.
The Flyers have dropped two straight as they are in a battle with three teams for the bottom three playoff positions in the Eastern Conference standings.