Skip to main content

Hockey Ryan Poehling shines in NHL debut, leading Canadiens to win over Maple Leafs

Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen is scored on by Montreal Canadiens' Ryan Poehling during third period NHL hockey action in Montreal, Saturday, April 6, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press

Ryan Poehling notched a hat trick and then added the shootout winner in his NHL debut as the Montreal Canadiens beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-5 in the season finale for both teams on Saturday.

Jordan Weal and Andrew Shaw also scored for the Canadiens (44-30-8), who were eliminated from playoff contention on Friday night.

Goalie Charlie Lindgren, in his first game of the season, stopped 44-of-49 shots. Lindgren filled in for Carey Price, who had started the previous 13 games.

Story continues below advertisement

Price ended the season with a 35-24-6 record and a .918 save percentage.

Zach Hyman, Jake Gardiner, Trevor Moore, William Nylander and Kasperi Kapanen scored for the Maple Leafs (46-28-8), who will face the Boston Bruins in the first round of the playoffs. Frederik Andersen also stopped 44-of-49 shots.

Poehling scored the shootout winner on Montreal’s fourth shot after John Tavares failed to win it for Toronto. The American-born Poehling, Montreal’s first pick (25th overall) in the 2017 draft, recently completed his third NCAA season at St. Cloud State.

The shots were 49-49 after overtime — a new Canadiens record for combined shots in a game.

Montreal became the last team eliminated from playoff contention on Friday when the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the New York Rangers 3-2 in a shootout. The Canadiens have missed the playoffs in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2001.

Toronto jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first period. Hyman’s no-look shot went off Shea Weber’s skate and in at 5:50 before Gardiner’s shot from the point was deflected by Brendan Gallagher at 8:03.

Poehling scored his first NHL goal on his fourth career shift at 11:41 by going hard to the net and ramming the puck past Andersen.

The native of Lakeville, Minn., netted his second of the game to make it 2-2, an easy tap-in at 2:56 of the second period.

Poehling, who signed three-year entry-level deal last Sunday, became the fifth Canadiens player in franchise history to score at least two goals in his NHL debut. He’s the first to do it since John Ferguson in 1963, and the first to score a hat trick since Alex Smart in 1943.

Montreal grabbed its first lead of the game when Weal scored a power-play goal at 7:04 of the second.

The visitors tied it up less than two minutes later on Moore’s second of the season on a partial breakaway.

Shaw gave the Canadiens a 4-3 lead when he completed a give-and-go with Max Domi and Artturi Lehkonen at 10:17.

Nylander made it 4-4 at 17:33 of the second on a wraparound after Lindgren overcommitted to his left.

Story continues below advertisement

With 11:56 left to play in a 4-4 game, the Leafs broke the deadlock when Auston Matthews found Kapanen alone in the slot for the winner.

Poehling completed his hat trick with 2:31 left.

With an eye on the playoffs, Toronto rested four of its top defencemen: Ron Hainsey, Jake Muzzin, Nikita Zaitsev and Travis Dermott.

NOTES: Legendary broadcaster Bob Cole called his final game after a 50-year career. … Canadiens defenceman Paul Byron was out with a wrist injury. … The Canadiens will clean out their lockers on Tuesday.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter