Leafs open the scoring in the first five minutes.
Nylander saw the empty net, saw JT whirling getting control and that must have felt like an hour before the pass comes.
Matt Knies opens the parade to the penalty box with a fairly accidental-looking bonk to the head of a Tampa player that gets calls cross-checking because there is no penalty called bonking.
And that was over quickly.
Tampa takes the next penalty, a very legit interference call.
The Leafs show off an amazingly disorganized power play where no one completes a pass for the first half.
"The fourth line has been a little bit of a problem for Sheldon Keefe," says Craig Simpson, "they've been scored on in all four games so far."
Huh. I actually do think that motivates the rest of the team to try harder.
Waivers to the top line, and Barré-Boulet gets a goal courtesy of Nikita Kucherov.
2-1 Tampa Bay
Reaves gets away with a weird high-stick on Barré-Boulet that the ref doesn't see.
I started noticing the BioSteele branding all over the place last game, and it's extremely funny.
Jake McCabe goes off for hooking, and you know what that means!
And Samsonov gets the gate. Yeah, no problem, the starter who has never played a full season can't make a save. It's fine.
A Tampa player gets the "playing with a broken stick" penalty.
Great stop by Woll on a shorthanded chance because, yes, this is how the power play is going.
I mean, it's Kucherov on his game 100%. I'm not sure if this is the goalie or just shit happens sometimes. But considering how bad Samsonov has been, I wouldn't have wanted to look at him either.
Otherwise, Leafs domination of the shot count doesn't make up for losing (by a long chalk) the special teams battle largely by being bad in the defensive zone.
Not winning the quality battle, just making it look good on volume.
Klingberg makes his presence felt with what is to my mind – as the person who dislikes Klingberg the most – Hagel running into Klingberg's shoulder.
In a zero tolerance league that's five and a game. In this one it's two minutes for a check to the head.
William "bad timing" Nylander takes a penalty to make it a five-on-three for Tampa for a few seconds.
Giordano pays in pain for blocking a Kucherov blast, and then the Leafs kill the rest of that helpful clock eating. Helpful for Tampa.
Hagel doesn't return to the game for several minutes, so he was in concussion protocol.
Leafs follow up some offensive zone time with a sustained period hemmed in where Woll has to save them.
Keefe has vaulted Liljegren up out of the bottom four to play with Rielly, we'll see if that lasts, but it's an attempt to generate offence and perhaps reward Liljegren for a blunder free game.
I like Liljegren with McCabe, mostly because McCabe isn't constantly surprised by what Liljegren does like he seems to be with Klingberg.
The Leafs are at 60% Corsi and 57% xG after two, but I'm going to take a hard line on this. Don't tell me they're actually playing well if they're dominating the shot clock when the other team no longer needs a goal. And don't tell me about score adjusted Corsi like I'm new, either.
The second was better than the first, but then it would be, wouldn't it? The score is still 3-1 for Kucherov.
Woll opens the period with a big stop on a Point rush.
Johansson claps back with two on Tavares. Looks like defensive pairs are back to normal, too.
Lucky for the Leafs, Stamkos misses on two unimpeded chances.
Knies! Matthew Knies!
Extremely reassuring to see Max Domi helping make this happen. He has to get it together.
As always, Leafs, I'm willing to rewrite the headline. You have seven minutes.
Oh yeah, baby!!! Matt Knies from Max Domi again!
I was actually thinking as Domi is winding up the pass that he still needs to shoot more, but I am not complaining now.
Timely block by Liljegren.
Good god, the Leafs just did team defence against Kucherov. Who are these people?
Woll with a great save on Kucherov. And the clock winds down, and it's OT for this one.
Okay that third period was legit real Leafs quality offence.
Leafs have the puck for two entire minutes until Max Domi shoots it and Johansson freezes it.
And yes, Klingberg sure can pass.
Matthews rips it over the net.
JT from William NYLANDER.
Whoooo! I never doubted.
JT was just the neutral observer here, so Nylander gets it.