Recap: Leafs Power Past Devils

On a night when they honored late founding owner Dr. John J. McMullen, the New Jersey Devils played a lot like their 1982 forebearers in a crushing loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Moving the Colorado Rockies to New Jersey in 1982, McMullen owned the club for 18 years and presided over two Stanley Cup championships. The Devils made their former owner the first to be inducted into the ring of honor at Prudential Center.

Family and former players were on hand, wearing No. 82 sweaters with McMullen on the back. A commemorative patch was also worn by the current edition.

For the first time in 350 contests, New Jersey was without their injured captain and defenseman Andy Greene.

It was a flat start for the Devils and Toronto pounced, right off the rip.

First Period

In the opening frame, Nazem Kadri got behind the Devils defense and potted home the rebound off a James van Riemsdyk shot, much to the approval of the Leafs’ dad’s in attendance. The power play tally by Kadri at the 9:26 point was No. 15 on the season.

More sloppy play by the Devils accounted for a two-goal deficit. New Jersey failed to keep the zone on the power play and keeping the pressure on the puck, Connor Brown was able to wrestle the biscuit away from Cory Schneider and pocket a shorthanded goal. Brown’s ninth doubled the Toronto advantage at 13:17.

Shortly thereafter, with the Maple Leafs on the power play, Auston Matthews batted home a midair rebound for No. 21 on his rookie campaign. The 3-0 lead at the 14:40 mark was enough to chase Cory Schneider from the cage.

Backup Keith Kinkaid would settle things down eventually but not before surrendering a goal on the first shot he faced.

Toronto again capitalized on the power play. Tyler Bozak jammed home a rebound for his eighth on the season, at the 15:15 mark and it was 4-0 Maple Leafs.

Second Period

While the Devils picked up the pace, the second stanza was scoreless. Frederik Andersen stood tall making stops on all 11 shots sent in his direction.

Third Period

 New Jersey made a late flurry in the final frame but it was too little too late. The Devils snapped a 0-for-30 stretch on the power play as PA Parenteau powered home his team-leading eleventh tally at 16:36. Nearly a minute later, Jon Merrill broke through with a wraparound marker. The goal was the first of the season for the Devils blueliner and cut the Leafs advantage in half at the 17:31 mark.

However, the Leafs on 30 stops by Andersen would skate off with the 4-2 victory.

Scoring Summary


TOR — Nazem Kadri (15) assisted by Tyler Bozak (15) and James van Riemsdyk (16)

TOR — Connor Brown (9) unassisted

TOR — Auston Matthews (21) assisted by Josh Hyman (13) and Jake Gardiner (15)

TOR — Tyler Bozak (8) assisted by James van Riemsdyk (17) Nazem Kadri (9)


No goals.


NJ — PA Parenteau (12) assisted by Adam Henrique (13) and Damon Severson (17)

NJ — Jon Merrill (1) assisted by Miles Wood (2) and Devante Smith-Pelly (5)

THW Three Stars

First: Frederik Andersen

Second: Nazem Kadri

Third: Tyler Bozak

Next Up

Montreal Canadiens at Toronto Maple Leafs

Air Canada Centre, 7 p.m. EST on Jan. 7

Broadcast Channels: CBC, TVA

Next Up

Edmonton Oilers at New Jersey Devils

Prudential Center, 7 p.m. EST on Jan. 7

Broadcast Channels: MSG+