January 13, 2020 / 3:06 AM / 16 days ago

Huberdeau makes history as Panthers topple Leafs

EditorsNote: Adds first name to Brett Connolly in 8th graf

Jan 12, 2020; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs right wing Kasperi Kapanen (24) shoots on net as Florida Panthers goaltender Chris Driedger (60) defends during the first period at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

Jonathan Huberdeau became Florida’s all-time leading scorer in the club’s best offensive game this season, lifting the Panthers to an 8-4 rout of the Toronto Maple Leafs on Sunday night in Sunrise, Fla.

Florida held a 7-1 lead at 12:37 of the second period and withstood three consecutive goals by Toronto, which lost its fifth straight in South Florida.

An All-Star selection, Huberdeau collected a goal and an assist to boost his career point total to a franchise-best 420 — one more than Olli Jokinen.

Mike Hoffman potted two goals, Vincent Trocheck and captain Aleksander Barkov each had a goal and two assists and Frank Vatrano had one of each. Defenseman Josh Brown and Mike Matheson also tallied for Florida, which recorded a season-high scoring output.

Backup Chris Driedger made a career-high 43 saves in place of No. 1 goalie Sergei Bobrovsky, who is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

Mitchell Marner scored twice, Zach Hyman recorded a goal and two assists and captain John Tavares also tallied for the Maple Leafs, who lost their third straight game (0-2-1).

All-Star Frederik Andersen allowed four goals on 12 shots before being relieved by Michael Hutchinson, who made 13 saves.

Brett Connolly sent a pass to Brown for his third goal at 1:49. Then fourth-liner Mark Pysyk found himself on a line change with top center Barkov and fed the captain for his 14th goal at 3:47.

Hoffman sizzled home a rocket on a two-on-one rush for a 3-0 lead.

Florida’s first shot of a wild second period — a goal by Matheson just 49 seconds in — chased Andersen and brought in former Panthers goalie Hutchinson. Florida scored on every third shot on Andersen.

Barkov slid a puck on a breakaway rush back to Vatrano, who beat Hutchinson on the first shot he faced for a short-handed goal, but Hyman’s 11th put Toronto on the board just as the power play ended at 3:30.

Trocheck answered with a goal on another two-on-one break for a 6-1 lead as Florida scored on its first three shots of the frame.

Huberdeau tied Jokinen’s franchise points record on another odd-man rush by backhanding home a pass from Barkov, but the visitors countered with tallies by Marner and Tavares as the teams combined for seven goals in the period.

Marner scored Toronto’s third consecutive goal just 34 seconds into the third, but Huberdeau’s assist on Hoffman’s power-play goal set the franchise record.

—Field Level Media

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