Post-Game Analysis: Maple Leafs Defeat Senators 5-4 in a Shootout

Maple Leafs Star Auston Matthews Celebrates Win With Teammate Matt Murray
Maple Leafs Star Auston Matthews Celebrates Win With Teammate Matt Murray Photo credit: Jack Dempsey/Getty Images

On Saturday night, the Battle of Ontario was in full swing as the Maple Leafs defeated the Ottawa Senators 5-4 in a shootout! After coming over in a trade this offseason between the two sides, Maple Leaf goaltender Matt Murray finally got to play his old team. The 28-year-old goaltender made forty-eight saves en route to the team’s forty-second win of the year. 

In the opening frame, the Ottawa Senators started strong. After really testing Leafs goaltender Matt Murray early, it was the blue and white who opened up the scoring. Despite leading the shot totals five to nothing at the time, an opportunity on the rush led to a rebound opportunity in the slot for Leafs defenseman Jake McCabe. The newly acquired 29-year-old defenseman scored his 3rd goal of the season only 3:11 into the game. 

Once the Maple Leafs took an early 1-0 lead, the Ottawa Senators started to push back, tying the game in an extremely odd fashion. After an Erik Brannstrom shot from the point was deflected thanks to Senators forward Shane Pinto, the puck caught his teammate Julien Gauthiers skate, causing the puck to fly over the Maple Leaf goaltender into the net. The Senators tied the game with just over five minutes remaining in the opening frame.

Once the second period began, the Toronto Maple Leafs were awarded a power-play opportunity. Just when it looked like the perfect chance to steal the momentum from the Senators, it was Ottawa who scored while being down a player. 21-year-old Senators star Tim Stutzle rushed the puck down the ice, firing one right through Matt Murray. The former third-overall pick scored his 35th goal of the season 5:32 into the second.

Shortly after the Ottawa Senators took a 2-1 lead, Maple Leafs star Mitch Marner tied the game right back. The 25-year-old Leafs forward received a pass from teammate Morgan Rielly, setting up Mitch Marner with a wide-open shooting lane to score the team’s second goal. This was Mitch Marner’s 26th goal of the season, coming 6:09 into the middle frame. 

After the game was tied at two apiece, the Senators came blazing with pressure, coming so close to a third goal. However, after Leafs star Auston Matthews forced a turnover in the offensive zone. The 25-year-old forward found his teammate Calle Järnkrok all alone for a blast. The Maple Leafs took a 3-2 lead just around the mid-way point. 

After Calle Järnkrok finished a beautiful play setup by Auston Matthews, the Ottawa Senators kept coming in waves. Still, they just couldn’t beat Leafs goaltender Matt Murray heading into the second intermission. The 28-year-old Leafs goaltender was enjoying a nice return to Ottawa, stopping thirty-five shots through two periods.

Once the third period was underway, the Ottawa Senators kept pushing, but it was the Toronto Maple Leafs again who scored first. Leafs forward Calle Järnkrok buried a two-on-one opportunity for his second of the game and 17th goal of the season. The Maple Leafs took a 4-2 lead with just over ten minutes remaining.

After the Leafs went up by a pair, the Ottawa Senators started to claw back, this time thanks to Brady Tkachuk. The Ottawa Senators star was fed a beautiful pass from teammate Tim Stutzle in the slot, making no mistake with the chance Brady Tkachuk brought the game within one. 

As the clock began to close on the Ottawa Senators, a last-effort shot from Ottawa’s Claude Giroux hit the knee of Leafs defenseman Jake McCabe redirecting the puck to the side of the Leafs goal. Standing all alone to the left side of Leafs goaltender Matt Murray was Brady Tkachuk, who took the loose puck and lifted it over the Maple Leafs goaltender, tying the game with ten seconds remaining. 

After a wild regulation finish in the Battle of Ontario, we were headed to overtime. Still, after both teams could not convert in the three-on-three five-minute window, the game needed a shootout to declare the winner. After a lengthy shootout battle, Leafs forward Alex Kerfoot finally closed the game scoring for the Maple Leafs. The shootout was entertaining and had an unlikely hero to decide this one.

The Maple Leafs finalized their forty-second win of the season in a shootout and will now look ahead to Tuesday night as they take on the New York Islanders. The Maple Leafs now sit second in the Atlantic Division with a 42-18-9 record, sitting three points ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning with a game in hand.

Thanks for reading! For more Leafs content, follow me on Twitter at ITR_Anselmo.

Stanley Cup Aspirations Cue’ the Duck Boats Pod

The boys are back after a long break but have plenty to talk about as the playoffs are in full swing. We go series by series, looking at how teams have fared so far and who will come out on top. Thanks for listening! Please rate and review our show on your favorite listening platform. Check out our partner's website at for all your latest hockey news.
  1. Stanley Cup Aspirations
  2. The Final Countdown
  3. Here Come the Playoffs
  4. Home Stretch
  5. Kevy Cooks

Joshua Anselmo

A hockey mind that's always looking at new and insightful ways to bring different perspectives of the game we all love.

One thought on “Post-Game Analysis: Maple Leafs Defeat Senators 5-4 in a Shootout”

  1. That was as great of a games synopsis as there ever was. Enjoyed reading an accurate, non-bias approach with pure facts of how the game was. Well done sir. Look forward to reading more as the season goes on. 😃

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