Photo Credit: © John E. Sokolowski | USA Today

Round 1 Game 4 Postgame: Leafs vs Bruins

This game four in Toronto represented an exciting opportunity for the Leafs to go up 3 games to 1 in this initial playoff series on the road to the 2019 Stanley Cup.

Let’s get right into the action packed game it was.

1st period

The Bruins got off to an early advantage with a powerplay opportunity early to set the tone. On the advantage, just before it ended, Charlie McAvoy finished off a slick passing play for the Bruins to take the 1-0 lead:

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Only a few minutes later, the Bruins started to show signs of dominance, with a great pass in front to Brad Marchand for a 2-0 lead:

Frederik Andersen, as he has done all series, was giving his all to hold the Leafs in this one and not let the Bruins run away with the game, including this stellar save on Charlie Coyle:

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The Leafs were able to get one back, too, with this fantastic tip in front of the net by Zach Hyman:

2nd period

Showing unique resilience and awareness to track the puck in the air, Auston Matthews was able to squeeze the puck through Tuukka Rask to tie the game at 2-2:

It didn’t stay tied for very long though, as Brad Marchand gets a good bounce that leads to a second chance at a net front pass, which is finished by David Pastrnak:

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Shortly after, Auston Matthews takes an unfortunate penalty in a battle with Charlie McAvoy, retaliating to McAvoy’s hold against him that went uncalled. On the ensuing powerplay, the Bruins were able to find Pastrnak in front again, this time from behind the net, to put them up 4-2:

It looked like the Leafs had their comeback-starting goal on a tee, but Connor Brown was stopped on an incredible save by Tuukka Rask:

The fight to come back was not fruitful, and the period ended with the score 4-2 for Boston.

3rd period

The Leafs had a slow start in the third when they needed to be on fire, and had few icings that really limited their ability to get going.

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A good screen in front then screened Andersen on a Zdeno Chara shot that goes past Andersen before he even sees it:

It was now, though, that the comeback began. First, it was a great play on a powerplay by Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews:

Then it was a shot at the point by Travis Dermott to make it 5-4:

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But unfortunately it was too little too late, as the Bruins added a late empty net goal to make the final score 6-4.

Final Thoughts

Who wore the Crown?

After every Leaf game, we’re recognizing one Leaf player who best exemplified what it means to play hockey the “Toronto Way”: with heart and soul, above all else. Who wore the Crown is brought to you by Crown Royal, passionate fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs. 

Auston Matthews was finally showing some dominance tonight. Although his two goals were not enough for a win, Matthews was the most dangerous Leaf from the start of the night onward, and #34 absolutely deserves the crown.

The Leafs as a whole were a bit slow tonight, and were giving up the blue line too easily for most of the game. This hurt them significantly on the penalty kill, where the Bruins took the early lead in the game with two powerplay goals.

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The refs called a pretty tight game tonight. It’s unfortunate that we still have yet to see any consistency in officiating, but tonight there weren’t any obvious blunders in my opinion.

Tune in to the Game 5 matchup on Friday night in Boston, starting at 7 pm Eastern time. See you there, and go Leafs go!!!

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  • Drapes55

    I have to say, watching this game, I was very impressed by the Leafs push back and resolve. They never seemed to get down in themselves and didn’t allow Boston to dictate the game. At no point did I feel the game ever get away from the Leafs and the Bruins dominate. This is a good sign for the Leafs going forward and I have faith that a second round matchup with Columbus is not out of the realm of possibility