TORONTO (AP) — The Toronto Maple Leafs chased another starting goalie — and gave their own netminder some fits, too
Tyler Bozak, Leo Komarov and Nazem Kadri scored third-period goals and Toronto held off the New York Rangers 8-5 on Saturday night in their wild home opener.
It was an adventure in defending for both teams at times, with Toronto pulling ahead 5-1 in the first period and chasing Henrik Lundqvist before the Rangers scored four straight to quieten the Air Canada Centre crowd.
“The second period, I don’t know what we were doing,” coach Mike Babcock said. “We got away from our game. That’s the way sports should be. When you don’t do things right, you shouldn’t have success and we didn’t. There’s lot of things we can get better at but the way I look at it is we’ve played two (games) now and found a way to survive in both of them and win the games.”
Toronto won its opener 7-2 on Wednesday night in Winnipeg, also running off starting goalie Steve Mason.
“They’re a good team, really good team,” Lundqvist said. “They make you pay if you’re not sharp with your decisions in your own end.”
Frederik Andersen made 30 saves for Toronto.
Bozak ended the Maple Leafs’ slide to make it 6-5 at 7:17 of third, redirecting a pass from the corner from Jake Gardiner over Ondrej Pavelec’s glove. The Rangers lost a challenge that the play was offside, earning a minor penalty in the process.
Kevin Hayes took a slashing penalty for New York, and Komarov made it 7-5 at 9:52, tapping in the rebound after William Nylander roofed a backhand off the crossbar.
The Rangers pulled their goalie with some 3 minutes remaining only to see Ryan McDonagh take a hooking penalty. Kadri took advantage with a low shot with 1:30 to go.
Zach Hyman scored twice, and Dominic Moore, Jake Gardiner and Nikita Zaitsev added goals for Toronto.
J.T. Miller, Kevin Shattenkirk, Mika Zibanejad, Marc Staal and Mats Zuccarello scored for the Rangers. Zuccarello also had three assists.
NOTES: The Rangers were coming off an opening 4-2 home loss to Colorado on Thursday night. … Moore, who played parts of five seasons with the Rangers, replaced Eric Fehr while defenseman Calle Rosen came in for Andreas Borgman.
Rangers: Host Montreal on Sunday night.
Maple Leafs: Host Chicago on Monday night.
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