William Nylander was credited with the winning goal 2:38 into overtime Friday night for the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs, who ran their winning streak to six games by edging the New Jersey Devils, 5-4, in Newark, N.J.
The winning goal for the Maple Leafs was an own goal for the Devils. Nylander’s shot into the crease bounced away from goalie Mackenzie Blackwood but New Jersey defenseman Damon Severson didn’t realize how close he was to the net and his attempt at a backhanded pass into the boards instead trickled past Blackwood.
The bizarre goal provided an appropriate end to a game that featured four ties.
Zack Hyman, Ilya Mikheyev, Kasperi Kapanen and John Tavares also scored for the Maple Leafs. Goalie Michael Hutchinson made 24 saves.
Nico Hischier, Nikita Gusev, Kyle Palmieri and Jesper Bratt scored for the Devils, who have lost three of four (1-2-1). Blackwood recorded 32 saves.
The Devils struck first in the back-and-forth affair 4:33 into the first, when Hischier fired a shot off the post past Hutchinson, who was screened by Tavares.
The Maple Leafs took the lead by scoring twice in 19 seconds late in the period. Hyman tied the game with a power-play goal when he shoved a rebound of a Morgan Rielly shot between Blackwood’s legs with 3:04 left. Mikheyev then put Toronto ahead by redirecting a shot by Tavares.
The Devils tied the score with a 5-on-3 goal 1:42 into the second. Sami Vatanen’s shot was deflected by Hutchinson and the puck bounced off the stick of Hischier and to Gusev, who fired a shot past a sprawling Hutchinson and into the wide-open corner of the net.
The Maple Leafs went ahead again fewer than four minutes later when Alexander Kerfoot’s pass bounced off the left boards and to a streaking Kapanen, who sprinted down the ice to catch up to the puck before firing a shot past Blackwood and into the far corner of the net at the 5:16 mark.
The lead lasted less than two minutes as Palmieri scored at 7:01. A little more than three minutes later, Bratt gave the Devils their second lead by capping a 2-on-1 with 8:49 left.
The Devils hung on to the lead until Tavares tied the score with a power-play goal from point-blank range 8:15 into the third.
—Field Level Media