They have not played that defensive style for a long time, nearly as long as their former president and general manager, Lou Lamoriello, has been running the go-go Maple Leafs. Chicago was able to grab a two-goal lead in the third period, before the Maple Leafs began their comeback. "I'm not taking anything away from their team and their goalie (Cory Schneider) played great, but we didn't have any snap, we didn't have any juice. It was 2-2 after one but that flattered us". But, as Babcock noted, "I didn't think we worked". Hockey is fair and you get what you deserve. "You don't, then you cheat yourself and you look like (tonight)". He gave New Jersey a 3-2 lead.
Tied 2-2 after 20 minutes, New Jersey scored twice in the second period despite being outshot 17-12. Adam Henrique of the Devils lost the puck before shooting, but Frederik Andersen swept it right to trailer Brian Gibbons.
New Jersey went ahead 3-2 at 9:58 of the second on the power play, with rookie Jesper Bratt finding Zacha left alone in front of goal to complete a tic-tac-toe passing sequence. Like the Leafs last season, their second under Lamoriello and Babcock, the Devils' rebuilding plan appears to have clicked into gear this season. But Pavel Zacha's second of the game restored the three-goal lead. "But even if they do, we have to be ready". "Obviously the message sent wasn't received the last two days", Babcock said. "By doing the pre-scout, we knew what we were in for". It was his first goal of the season. Some nights, it's still a high-wire act on the breakout and Andersen won't be there to bail them out. Leafs rookie defenceman Calle Rosén, who had a tough night along with defence partner and fellow rookie Andreas Borgman, made a bad clearing attempt in his own zone.
Kyle Palmieri was back in the lineup after he sat out the last game with a lower body injury. "If he keeps going at this pace, it's going to be pretty impressive". It's an adjustment we've got to make and an adjustment for the officials.
"They play with much more speed, they're on top of you. We weren't very good".
Schneider improved to 7-1-3 in his career against the Leafs, while coach John Hynes has to be thrilled with the results in October with seven new players on the roster. Nikita Zaitsev, Connor Brown and James van Riemsdyk each had one goal. The son of ex-Leaf Randy Wood added another less than two minutes later.
The two showed innate chemistry in limited ice time together in Monday's 6-2 win at Buffalo, with Bratt, who had already scored twice, setting up Johansson's second goal of the game.