There are few things more frustrating than running into a hot goalie, and playing a team that pokes and chips all game, and the Anaheim Ducks dealt both last night.
Jonathan Bernier made 39 saves for the third straight game and Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau scored twice as the Maple Leafs dispatched the Ducks 4-0 Wednesday at Honda Center.
Despite blitzing the Toronto goal with 18 shots in the opening 20 minutes and out-attempting the visitors by a 33-22 margin, Anaheim couldn't put a puck past Bernier and opened the door for the Leafs to take advantage of a broken play. Off an offensive zone face off won by Tyler Bozak, Matt Hunwick's shot from the line hit traffic and bounced to Parenteau at the right hashmark for a wrist shot that beat John Gibson 8:54 into the period.
The period and game featured in a lot of chippy, off play stuff that appeared to frustrate Anaheim after they came up empty on an early power play. Ryan Getzlaf and James van Riemsdyk nearly came to blows, and when Roman Polak boarded Mike Santorelli behind the Ducks net and Josh Manson came to his teammates defense the game seemed to go off the rails.
Manson and Polak squared off, with the Ducks defender scoring the knockdown and throwing an additional short shot as the players were tumbling to the ice. Polak took exception and threw an extra punch with the linesman between them after the players had returned to their feet that set Manson off and earned him a 10-minute misconduct. Anaheim got what would be their final power play of the game out of the situation, getting a total of five extra man shots on Bernier, and saw Toronto draw the final four advantages of the game.
Parenteau doubled the Leaf lead in the second, cleaning up a rebound of a van Riesmdyk short break-in backhand from the far circle on a lane created by Kevin Bieksa stepping up on Bozak at the far wall and both Santorelli and Carl Hagelin a hair late recovering. Nazem Kadri made it 3-0, the late fourth man on a 3-on-3 break in coming from picking up a new stick at the bench, taking a feed from Leo Komarov cross slot and picking the corner with a wrist shot.
Brad Boyes ended the drama early in the third, redirecting a fluttering puck thrown on net from the point by Dion Phaneuf past Frederik Andersen to complete the 4-0 score line. Andersen replaced Gibson just 41 seconds in to the third period after Kadri collided with the Ducks All Star rookie, who left the game with an undisclosed lower body injury. Gibson finished with 16 stops, while Andersen held his own making saves on 10 of 11 shots in the third period including five from the high danger area.
Perhaps the perfect encapsulation of the evening came just over a minute after Toronto's final goal, when Bernier took a chop at the back of Corey Perry's left knee with the Ducks forward screening him. Perry retaliated with a whack and cross check of his own, earning a pair of minor penalties while Bernier drew just the single two minutes. Patrick Maroon made it a five-on-three advantage for the Leafs by throwing the Toronto water bottle after the play, which Anaheim killed off, blanking the visitors on six power play chances and allowing seven shots while a man down.
The Ducks continue their season-high eight game home stand facing the St. Louis Blues on Friday night at 7 PM.