Austin Matthews scores in OT, Maple Leafs beat Canadiens 3-2
TORONTO (AP) — Auston Matthews scored his second goal of the game in overtime, John Tavares scored his first goal for Toronto and the Maple Leafs beat the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 on Wednesday night in the opener for both teams.
Matthews took a feed from Patrick Marleau and beat goalie Carey Price 1:01 into the extra period.
Frederik Andersen stopped 34 shots, Nazem Kadri had two assists for the Maple Leafs.
Artturi Lehkonen and Andrew Shaw scored for Montreal, and Price made 23 saves. Max Domi, the son of former Leafs tough guy Tie Domi. had two assists in his first game for the Canadiens.
Tavares, who signed a $77 million, seven-year deal July 1 with the team he cheered for growing up in nearby Oakville after nine seasons with the New York Islanders, moved past Matthew Peca and roofed a shot over Price with 1:53 left in the second period.
Shaw tied it at 2 on a power play with 12.3 seconds left in the second. Shaw was playing his first game in nearly seven months after suffering a knee injury March 13.
Montreal rookie Jesperi Kotkaniemi, the first NHL player born in the 2000s, picked up an assist. The Finn, who turned 18 in July, also became the second-youngest player in Canadiens’ history to score a point.
NOTES: Montreal coach Claude Julien sent a strong message to his team before puck drop by making 30-year-old defenseman Karl Alzner and 35-year-old center Tomas Plekanec healthy scratches. The move ended Alzner’s consecutive games streak at 622, the fourth-most among active players. ... Domi was acquired from the Arizona Coyotes for Alex Galchenyuk in June.
Canadiens: At Pittsburgh on Saturday night.
Maple Leafs: Hosts Ottawa on Saturday night.