TORONTO (AP) — Andreas Johnsson scored twice during Toronto’s four-goal outburst in a seven-minute stretch to open the second period and the Maple Leafs cruised past the Edmonton Oilers 6-2 on Wednesday night.
Mitch Marner added a goal and two assists, while John Tavares, William Nylander and Patrick Marleau all had a goal and an assist for Toronto.
Frederik Andersen made 34 saves for the Maple Leafs, who now turn their attention to Thursday night when they visit the Islanders in Tavares’ return to New York.
Leon Draisaitl and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored for Edmonton. Mikko Koskinen allowed four goals on 16 shots before being replaced by Anthony Stolarz, who finished with 18 saves. Darnell Nurse had two assists.
Oilers star Connor McDavid returned to the lineup after serving his two-game suspension for a hit to the head on Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy last week. Wednesday marked another homecoming for McDavid, who grew up in a suburb just north of Toronto and cheered for the Leafs as a kid.
The 22-year-old had sat out three of Edmonton’s last four games — one with illness and two because of the suspension — with his team managing five of a possible six points. The Oilers came in with six out of a possible eight points in their last four outings, but were also just 3-8-4 over the last 15.
Tied at 1 after the first period, the floodgates opened for Toronto at 1:09 when Marner redirected a perfect feed from Zach Hyman under Koskinen’s blocker for his 22nd goal of the season, and just his second in the last 14 games.
The Leafs then went up 3-1 just 1:17 later when Johnsson finished off a pretty passing play with Kasperi Kapanen and Auston Matthews for his 18th.
Nylander got in on the action on the power play at 4:50 when he ripped his fifth short-side upstairs on Koskinen, who gave way to Stolarz.
Johnsson rounded out the seven-minute deluge on another man-advantage when he took a feed from Tavares in the slot and beat Stolarz through the pads for his second of the night.
Andersen held the fort in the first for Toronto, but made his best save on Oscar Klefbom later in the period when he robbed the defenseman on a great chance at the side of the net.
The Leafs got a brief scare earlier in the second when Kapanen crashed awkwardly into the boards and went to the locker room after one shift, but the winger returned toward the end of the period.
Tavares made it 6-1 with his 36th on a 5-on-3 power play 25 seconds into the third. Nugent-Hopkins scored his 20th with 3:54 left to round out the scoring.
It wasn’t all good news for the Leafs, however, as defenseman Travis Dermott went straight to the locker room midway through the final period doubled over in pain favoring his left arm/shoulder after taking a hit along the boards.
Things actually started out well for the Oilers as Draisaitl opened the scoring on the power play at 11:06 of the first when he stepped around Jake Muzzin and then toe-dragged fellow Leafs blue-liner Ron Hainsey before depositing his 39th goal, and 15th in the last 15 games, past Andersen.
Toronto, which trailed 13-2 on the shot clock at one point after also getting badly outplayed in the opening 20 minutes of Monday’s 5-3 victory over Buffalo, got back even just after an Edmonton penalty expired. Stopped on a breakaway earlier in the period, Marleau collected the rebound of Muzzin’s point shot and slid home his 12th of campaign, and second in the last 13 games.
The 39-year-old also moved into a tie with Ron Francis for 28th on the NHL’s all-time goals list with 549.
NOTES: Tavares spent nine seasons with the Islanders before signing with Toronto as a free agent on July 1. ... The Leafs announced defenseman Jake Gardiner is week-to-week with a back injury, while center Nazem Kadri missed a fourth straight game with a concussion. Kadri skated before Monday’s practice.
Oilers: visit Ottawa on Thursday night.
Maple Leafs: at New York Islanders on Thursday night.
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