Final

Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series tied 2-2

Game 1: Saturday, October 21st
Rangers5Final
SO
Maple Leafs4
Game 2: Saturday, December 16th
Rangers2Final
Maple Leafs9
Game 3: Wednesday, January 31st
Maple Leafs2Final
Rangers1
Game 4: Sunday, April 1st
Maple Leafs2Final
Rangers7

Rangers 2

(18-11-4, 40 pts)

Maple Leafs 9

(16-13-5, 37 pts)

Coverage: CBC

7:00 PM ET, December 16, 2006

Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

1 2 3 T
NYR 1 0 12
TOR 5 3 19

K. Wellwood (Maple Leafs - C): Goals: 3, Assists: 2

A. Ponikarovsky (Maple Leafs - LW): Goals: 2, Assists: 3

M. Sundin (Maple Leafs - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 3

Leafs continue scoring surge, rock Rangers by seven

TORONTO (AP) -- A scoring outburst in the last three games has vaulted the Toronto Maple Leafs into fifth place in the Eastern Conference.

Kyle Wellwood had three goals and two assists to lead the suddenly high-scoring Maple Leafs to a 9-2 victory over the New York Rangers on Saturday night.

Carlo Colaiacovo, Alexei Ponikarovsky and John Pohl also scored in a five-goal first period for the Maple Leafs, who have now scored 18 goals in winning three straight.

Toronto scored just nine goals during a season-high seven-game losing streak that ended Tuesday. Toronto dropped to 10th during the skid.

"Everything is going in and everybody's contributing. It's a lot of fun," Wellwood said.

Wellwood, who notched his first multiple-goal game, had a career-high five points. Ponikarovsky also had a career-high five points

"They sat back a lot," Wellwood said. "There was so much open ice out there you knew whoever was out there was going to get some points."

Darcy Tucker scored his 19th goal to give Toronto a 7-1 lead at 9:51 of the second. Ponikarovsky scored his second at 13:27 of the second to make it 8-1.

Jeff O'Neill added a goal late in the third.

"There's not much coaching that goes into a 9-2 game," Toronto coach Paul Maurice said. "You just hope nobody gets hurt."

Toronto allowed a team-record low 13 shots, last previously done March 9, 1975, at Washington.

Darius Kasparaitis and Martin Straka scored for the Rangers, who suffered their worst loss of the season in ending their five-game winning streak.

The Rangers allowed just seven goals during the streak, but Toronto reached a season-high goal total against them.

New York coach Tom Renney said he saw a bad game coming.

"I'm not surprised by this, but certainly I'm disappointed," Renney said.

Henrik Lundqvist made a career-high 43 saves in a victory over Dallas on Thursday, but allowed eight goals on 24 shots before being replaced by Kevin Weekes to start the third period.

"We were just completely inept in front of him," Renney said of Lundqvist.

Toronto outshot New York 14-5 in the first.

Colaiacovo streaked toward the net and scored his first goal of the season by tipping a pass past Lundqvist at 5:33 of the first.

Just 1:33 later Ponikarovsky's pass deflected off New York defenseman's Marek Malik's skate and into the net.

Kasparaitis cut it to 2-1 with a weak backhanded shot that beat goalie Andrew Raycroft at 11:16. But Wellwood followed with two straight goals. He scored on a one-timer from the faceoff circle at 14:19 and scored again on a one-timer on a two-man advantage at 16:38.

Just 20 seconds later Pohl gave Toronto a 5-1 lead by scoring on a power play.

Fans threw hats on the ice after Wellwood put a rebound past Lundqvist at 5:19 of the second. Fans jeered whenever Lundqvist made a save after that.

"It was one of those nights where every bad bounce you can get we got," New York's Matt Cullen said. "It snowballed. We didn't play our best but we're playing Jersey tomorrow night and the faster we forget about it the better."

Game notes


Darcy Tucker didn't return after injuring his hand in the second period. ... Toronto lost its previous four games against New York. ... Kasparaitis scored for the first time since Dec. 20, 2003.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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