Pittsburgh at Toronto

Maple Leafs gain no ground in playoff run, still outside looking in


TORONTO -- The Toronto Maple Leafs didn't gain any ground in their bid for a playoff spot, and Tomas Kaberle made sure they didn't lose any either.

Kaberle scored his second goal of the game at 3:55 of overtime and the Maple Leafs took a 5-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.

Pittsburgh's Ryan Whitney tied it with four seconds left in regulation after the Penguins pulled goalie Marc-Andre Fleury for an extra skater. Pittsburgh rallied from a 4-1 deficit.

Overtime was delayed for at least 10 minutes after a fan collapsed in the stands. Fans and medical personal pumped the man's chest for several minutes before the fan was carried out. It happened right after Whitney tied the game.

"The gentleman was successfully resuscitated and he was on his way to more care," Toronto coach Paul Maurice said.

Maurice said the delay helped them.

"It was an emotional roller coaster. To fire that into the middle of what we're going through, clearly that is more important," Maurice said.

Chad Kilger, Alexei Ponikarovsky and Bryan McCabe also scored for the Maple Leafs, who stayed in ninth place in the Eastern Conference, one point and one place below Montreal and the playoff cutoff. Toronto, which missed the playoffs last year, has four games left.

"This is it, four left," Toronto goalie Andrew Raycroft said. "It's going to come down to the last one probably, we've got to hang in it. It would be nice to reel off a few more and give us some room."

The Maple Leafs, who lead Carolina and the New York Islanders by three points, have won seven straight at home after starting the season 11-15-5 at the Air Canada Centre. This game attracted a franchise-record crowd of 19,649.

"If we had to wait one hour, we would wait one hour," Kaberle said of the fan. "It's something you don't want to see. We're glad the person is good."

Gary Roberts, Maxime Talbot and Sidney Crosby also scored for the Penguins, who moved one point ahead of idle New Jersey for first place in the Atlantic Division.

"We were fortunate to get a point," Roberts said. "When you play in this atmosphere and the environment you got to be on your toes. If the Leafs make the playoffs they are going to be a force for sure. They are big and strong. If you get there anybody can win."

Crosby cut Toronto's lead to 4-3 at 15:22 of the third.

Fleury replaced Jocelyn Thibault after Thibault allowed four goals on 20 shots as the Maple Leafs grabbed a 4-1 lead.

Toronto put a shot on goal before Kilger backhanded a rebound into an open net at 4:28 of the first. Roberts, a former Leafs star, silenced the crowd by tying it on the power play just over two minutes later. He tipped Sergei Gonchar's shot from just inside the blue line.

Ponikarovsky's one-timer from the circle restored Toronto's lead at 18:30 of the first. Kaberle's screened shot beat Thibault blocker side at 3:08 of the second.

McCabe, standing in front of the net, made it 4-1 on the power play at 11:49 of the second by putting a rebound past Thibault.

Fleury took over and was sharp.

Talbot cut it to 4-2 with a shot from the side of the net at 16:31 of the second.


  • Toronto captain Mats Sundin has just one goal in 16 games. He needs one goal to tie Darryl Sittler's franchise mark (389).
  • The Maple Leafs have won seven straight at home for the first time since reeling off eight in a row from Nov. 19-Dec. 14, 2002.
  • Pittsburgh earned a point in 13 of 17 games in March.
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Tomas Kaberle's overtime goal gives the Maple Leafs two valuable points to stay in the playoff hunt. (AP)
Tomas Kaberle's overtime goal gives the Maple Leafs two valuable points to stay in the playoff hunt. (AP)
Pittsburgh (45-23-11)11204
Toronto  (38-29-11) «22015
Three Stars
T. Kaberle

Goals: 2
Assist(s): 1
R. Whitney

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
P. Kubina

Goals: 0
Assist(s): 1

Related Video

Scoring Summary
04:28Chad Kilger (14), Tip-In - Assists: Kyle Wellwood, Darcy Tucker
06:54Power Play - Gary Roberts (18), Tip-In - Assists: Sergei Gonchar, Evgeni Malkin
18:30Alexei Ponikarovsky (20), Tip-In - Assists: Nik Antropov, Mats Sundin
03:08Tomas Kaberle (10), Slap Shot - Assists: Darcy Tucker, Kyle Wellwood
11:49Power Play - Bryan McCabe (13), Tip-In - Assists: Mats Sundin, Tomas Kaberle
16:31Maxime Talbot (12), Tip-In - Assist: Michel Ouellet
15:22Sidney Crosby (36), Tip-In - Assists: Ryan Whitney, Evgeni Malkin
19:56Ryan Whitney (14), Slap Shot - Assists: Sergei Gonchar, Mark Recchi
03:55Tomas Kaberle (11), Slap Shot - Assists: Pavel Kubina, Kyle Wellwood
Penalty Summary
06:03Battaglia: Tripping - 2 min.
10:17White: Tripping - 2 min.
12:48Eaton: Hooking - 2 min.
19:42Kilger: Hooking - 2 min.
10:32Orpik: Hooking - 2 min.
11:57Orpik: Delaying Game - 2 min.
17:59Gill: Holding - 2 min.
00:35Antropov: Hooking - 2 min.
01:41Gill: Delaying Game - 2 min.
15:44Melichar: Hooking - 2 min.
Marc-Andre Fleury31:10161
Jocelyn Thibault31:49164
Andrew Raycroft 63:55324
Game Information
Attendance - 19649
Referees - Dan Marouelli, Brad Meier
Linesmen - Steve Miller, Derek Nansen
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