Maple Leafs hand Penguins first loss

Associated Press  |  Last updated January 23, 2013
James van Riemsdyk scored twice, James Reimer stopped 28 shots and the Toronto Maple Leafs raced past the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-2 on Wednesday night. Clarke MacArthur, Mikhail Grabovski and Tyler Bozak also scored for the Maple Leafs. Nikolai Kulemin added three assists as Toronto spoiled Pittsburgh's home opener by giving the Penguins a reality check. Sidney Crosby and reigning NHL MVP Evgeni Malkin scored their first goals of the season for Pittsburgh, but the Penguins struggled with Toronto's speed and failed to play with the kind of discipline that highlighted opening weekend wins over Philadelphia and the New York Rangers. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 19 shots for the Penguins but Pittsburgh couldn't get off to its first 3-0 start in 18 years. The Penguins began the shortened 48-game season with rousing road victories over the Flyers and Rangers, the kind of electric start that did little to dampen expectations about Pittsburgh being an early Stanley Cup favorite. And that was without Crosby or Malkin finding the back of the net. Malkin ended his drought - such as it is for a player who scored 23 goals while playing in Russia as the lockout dragged on - late in the first period when he stuffed a pass from Crosby in between Reimer's legs to give Pittsburgh a 1-0 lead. For the first time this season, it didn't hold up. Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma spoke openly about the problems Toronto's quickness provides, saying his team gave the Maple Leafs a little too much room to operate last season. Any attempts by the Penguins to tighten up, however, came up woefully short. Even with Bylsma experimenting with his lines - on a couple of occasions he paired Crosby and Malkin in even-strength situations - Pittsburgh looked a step slow. Toronto scored twice early in the second period to jump in front, including van Riemsdyk's first goal for Toronto after being acquired in an offseason trade with the Flyers. Crosby needed just 25 seconds to tie it, beating Reimer between the legs on a breakaway for his first goal in 280 days. The speedy Maple Leafs just kept coming, with van Riemsdyk collecting his second goal of the night - and his 101st career point - after intercepting a sloppy clearing attempt by Malkin and firing the puck over Fleury's glove to give Toronto a 3-2 lead. Toronto went in front despite losing winger Joffrey Lupul midway through the second period after a shot from teammate Dion Phaneuf hit him somewhere in his upper body. Lupul, who signed a five-year contract extension on Sunday, did not return. The Maple Leafs didn't need him, not after a Pittsburgh turnover left Grabovski all alone on the doorstep. Grabovski slipped the puck past Fleury to give Toronto a 4-2 lead and send the largest crowd in the brief history of Consol Energy Center heading for the exits a little early. NOTES: The Maple Leafs scratched defensemen Cody Franson and Mark Fraser and center David Steckel. Defensemen Ben Lovejoy, Robert Bortuzzo and center Dustin Jeffrey ... Toronto hosts the New York Islanders on Thursday night. The Penguins travel to Winnipeg on Friday ... Pittsburgh offered free food and half off merchandise to all fans as an apology following the 119-day lockout. --- Follow Will Graves at www.twitter.com/WillGravesAP
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Cult of Sport: Before there was Ezekiel Elliott, there was Eric Dickerson
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Adam Jones takes a shot at Terrelle Pryor

Jeff Fisher, Les Snead deny ‘toxic’ relationship reports

‘Field of Dreams’ 24-diamond complex clears final hurdle, will build on site from film

Dorial Green-Beckham fined for wearing non-charity Yeezy cleats

Chargers GM won’t commit to Mike McCoy’s return in 2017

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Police close to arresting Matt Barnes for alleged assault

Carmelo: Cryptic Instagram posts were about Phil Jackson

DeMarcus Cousins trade rumors won’t go away

NFL folks think Jabrill Peppers ‘more hype than substance'?

Joe Haden: Winless Browns the 'laughingstock of every joke’

Did Del Rio give Reid the stink eye after Thursday’s game?

Winners, losers and what is still pending from baseball's 2016 Winter Meetings

The best (and worst) times athletes hosted 'SNL'

Why UCLA's Lonzo Ball is the most interesting player in college hoops

The NBA goes courtside to curbside: Drinks and rides for discerning fans

Five teams on upset alert in NFL Week 14

CFB Crash Course, Graduation: Final grades and awards

NHL All-Star Game fans are in search of another John Scott

Box Score 12/9: Carey Price has had enough of your nonsense

MLB Winter Meetings, Day 4: News, notes and rumors

Matt Ryan is now Mr. Pick-Two

Ten most significant developments of the NBA season

Sporting life: Gifts for the fan who is always on point

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Winners, losers and what is still pending from the 2016 Winter Meetings

Why UCLA's Lonzo Ball is the most interesting player in college hoops

The NBA goes courtside to curbside: Drinks and rides for discerning fans

CFB Crash Course, Graduation: Final grades and awards

The five best (and worst) times athletes hosted 'SNL'

NHL All-Star Game fans are in search of another John Scott

Sporting life: Gifts for the fan who is always on point

Matt Ryan is now Mr. Pick-Two

MLB Winter Meetings, Day 4: News, notes and rumors

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker