Devils lose shootout to Toronto

December 16, 2008 7:40:18 PM PST
Vesa Toskala stopped Travis Zajac on a breakaway in the final seconds of overtime and Jason Blake had the winning goal in the shootout to lead the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 3-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night. Nik Antropov and Jeremy Williams scored in regulation for the Maple Leafs, who have won three straight for the first time this season. Toskala finished with 25 stops.

Toronto has consistently struggled in the shootout since it was introduced in 2005 but Blake's spinaround deke past Scott Clemmensen delivered a rare win in the tiebreaker.

Mike Rupp and Zach Parise scored regulation goals for New Jersey. Clemmensen also had 25 saves.

Williams' wrist shot at 15:06 in the second put Toronto up 2-1 and gave him a goal in three straight games since being recalled from the minors.

Parise tied it with a power-play goal in the final seconds of the period. He drove hard to the net and the puck deflected off his visor and in for his 17th of the season.

Toronto outshot the Devils 9-4 in the third but New Jersey had the best chance to win it. A Tomas Kaberle giveaway in the final minute gave Parise an open lane to the goal, but Toskala stopped his wrist shot.

Rupp got New Jersey off to a fast start, earning his third goal of the season just 1:49 into the game. Colin White and John Madden broke in on a 2-on-1, and Toskala stopped the first chance. But Toskala was down when defenseman Jeff Finger accidentally cleared the puck onto Rupp's stick.

Antropov tied it in the second, skating across the crease and shoveling a rebound past Clemmensen at 7:24 for his team-leading 11th goal.

Notes: The Devils are 10-7-1 since goalie Martin Brodeur suffered a torn biceps injury on Nov. 1. ... Toskala started his ninth straight game. ... Patrik Elias had an assist on New Jersey's second goal to extend his points streak to seven games. ... Toronto was without Luke Schenn (knee), Niklas Hagman (concussion), Jonas Frogren (arm) and Jamal Mayers (hand). ... Brodeur, Andy Greene (hand) and Sheldon Brookbank (healthy) sat out for New Jersey.