Canadiens vs Maple Leafs result: William Nylander’s third period goal gives Toronto victory in season opener


The last time these two teams met, the Canadiens celebrated the end of the Maple Leafs’ season. It was another first round flop for the Toronto club.

Wednesday night, of course, was only the first game of 82, but the Maple Leafs got a little rematch with a 2-1 win to open the season.

“The first 10 minutes are not good,” said coach Sheldon Keefe. “It took a while to get really comfortable in the game. From that point on I thought the effort was really strong.”

Those first 10 minutes saw the Canadiens soar and take a 1-0 lead on a Jonathan Drouin goal. It was a special moment as Drouin missed the end of the regular season and the team’s run to the Stanley Cup Final to deal with anxiety and insomnia.

Then at 10:12, Pierre Engvall – who had a great game for the Leafs – leveled things with a power play goal.

“I just try to do my best every day. I got to play with two good players and I think we found the chemistry pretty quickly there,” he said of skating with the new buddies Ondrej Kase and David Kampf who, like Engvall, are both Czech and speak Czech on the bench. He does not speak Czech. “I’m just going to go on and have fun.”

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Bench boss Sheldon Keefe noticed how well Engvall played in the game. How good is that? So good that he mentioned a shot into the empty net that led to an icing in the dying seconds of a one-goal game.

“He had a good game. I think he skated well, he scored us a big power play goal, gave us a lot of good changes… I thought he was really good. So good we’re going. give him a pass by shooting the empty net there, ”he said, eliciting a laugh from the gathered media.

It was close there for a while. Things continued until the third period until William Nylander hopped onto the ice, picked up the puck in the neutral zone, skated on the right wing and faked the shot before beating Jake Allen. He said he hadn’t anticipated the delay: “It just happened.”

The real stars of the game for the Leafs were the backend. Defensemen Jake Muzzin and Justin Holl hit big blocks, including a few in a 5-to-3 advantage for the Canadiens. Holl led the team with four blocks and made a saving save on the 5-3 shorthanded penalty. Goalie Jack Campbell stopped 31 of 32 shots he faced, including a few chances at home for the Canadiens.

“Jack was on fire tonight,” Nylander said.

A number of key guys had come out for both teams. Canadiens captain Shea Weber won’t be playing this season, and his career may be over. Carey Price is out for the next month after signing up for the NHL / NHLPA Player Assistance Program. Joe Thornton left the Leafs for sunny Florida, and Zach Hyman headed west to snow in Edmonton. Rocket Richard Trophy 2021 winner Auston Matthews is out for this one – and the next two after that – as he continues to recover from off-season wrist surgery. Mitchell Marner was a game time decision but played.

Sporting News provided live updates and highlights as the Canadiens and Maple Leafs faced off (all hours Eastern) :

Canadiens vs Maple Leafs results, highlights

Final score: Maple Leafs 2, Canadiens 1

9:52 p.m. – The Leafs win.

9:52 p.m. – Pierre Engvall, with the Leafs on the power play, freezes the puck.

9:50 p.m. – A little less than a minute to go and there’s a face-off in the Leafs’ zone. Toronto is doing it.

9:49 p.m. – The Canadians put the puck deep into the Leafs’ zone and shot Jake Allen to make 5v5.

9:48 p.m. – With 1:47 to go, the Leafs get a power play as Anderson is called in for harshness.

9:46 p.m. – Gallagher does Gallagher stuff in this one and there are a few jokes exchanged.

9:35 p.m. – Big save of Jack Campbell on a redirected shot then stops the rebound.

9:32 p.m. – Nylander called for tripping.

9:23 p.m. – Toronto is killing them both thanks to big blocks from guys like Holl and Muzzin. Montreal only got one shot.

9:20 p.m. – Marner is called in to stumble (maybe to the limit) and it’s a 5-on-3 for the Canadians for 1:44; however, Montreal has only scored once from a two-man advantage in 56 regular-season games in 2021.

9:19 p.m. – Jason Spezza trips Brendan Gallagher at the Leafs blue line. The Canadiens head to the power play for the second time in the game.

9:12 p.m. – GOAL. William Nylander comes off the bench, takes the puck in the zone and scores from the right circle. The Maple Leafs lead 2-1.

9:11 p.m. – The third period begins. Last year, the Canadiens and Maple Leafs played the season opener and Toronto won in overtime 5-4.

Second period: Canadiens 1, Maple Leafs 1

8:52 p.m. – The period ends.

8:46 p.m. – Canadian Olympic legend Penny Oleksiak is in the game.

8:39 p.m. – Smooth stick handling through the slot by Marner but cannot be collected.

8:32 p.m. – The Canadians get a shot on goal. About eight minutes later and it’s their only shot on goal in the period.

8:30 p.m. – The Canadians are heading for the power play.

8:24 p.m. – Jake Allen comes to a halt with two Leafs crashing down and there’s a mini-scrum with Bunting in the middle. There was a quick assessment but no objective.

8:15 p.m. – The second period is underway.

8:02 p.m. – Lots of love for Drouin on the timeline.

First period: Canadiens 1, Maple Leafs 1

7:56 p.m. – Last seconds of the period and Rasmus Dahlin’s point shot came out of Jake Evans and the crossbar.

7:51 p.m. – The Maple Leafs are starting to have more action in the Canadiens zone.

7:38 p.m. – GOAL PP. A second before the end of the power play, the Canadiens crumble and, after getting two Canadians on screen – plus two of his own guys in front – Pierre Engvall defeats Jake Allen. Match tied 1-1.

7:35 p.m. – Alexander Romanov is called up for interference and the Leafs have a chance to equalize him.

7:34 p.m. – GOAL. Jonathan Drouin scores a 2 on 1. What a moment. The Canadians lead 1-0.

7:33 p.m. – Not much to do on the power play for the Leafs – that’s kind of how it turned out at the end of 2021.

7:27 p.m. – Montreal storms out but Ben Chiarot takes a penalty. Maple Leafs get first power play.

7:25 p.m. – Scramble ahead and again Campbell comes in big. Josh Anderson again in the middle.

19:23 – Marner on the left wing just misses the left circle

7:22 p.m. – David Savard takes a look.

7:20 p.m. – Less than 30 seconds later and the Canadiens had two quick chances where Jack Campbell had to play a big game.

7:20 p.m. – After the pre-game festivities, including fans singing the national anthem, keep going.


6:50 p.m. – The lines are there for the Leafs.

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On which channel Canadians c. Maple Leafs?

  • Dated: Wed 13 Oct
  • Time: 7 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel (Canada) : SN, SN360, TVAS
  • Flux: ESPN + (United States) | SN NOW (Canada)

Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. ET with a pre-game show hosted by Caroline Cameron alongside analysts Kevin Bieksa, Cassie Campbell-Pascall and Elliotte Friedman. Chris Cuthbert will have the call with Craig Simpson as analyst and Kyle Bukauskas as reporter.

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