Marner, Brown score to help Leafs beat Bruins 4-1
TORONTO (AP) -- Rookies Mitch Marner and Connor Brown scored, helping the Toronto Maple Leafs roll over the Boston Bruins 4-1 for their first win of the season on Saturday night.
James van Riemsdyk and Milan Michalek also scored for the Maple Leafs, while Frederik Andersen made 24 saves for his first win with Toronto.
Anton Khudobin allowed four goals on 20 shots for Boston. David Pastrnak scored his third goal in two games this season.
One of six rookies in Toronto's lineup, Brown opened the scoring with his second career goal just over 2 minutes into the first. The 22-year-old Toronto native pounced on Matt Hunwick's point shot that caromed off a pile of bodies in front of Khudobin, shooting it high for the 1-0 lead.
Marner, also a Toronto-area native playing in front of his hometown for the first time, got the Leafs second goal about 10 minutes later.
The fourth overall pick of the 2015 draft, Marner took a pass from Tyler Bozak just outside the Boston blue line, gained the offensive zone with space before firing a shot far-side behind the goaltender. It was the first career goal for the 19-year-old and sixth straight goal scored by a rookie for Toronto to start the season following Auston Matthews' four-goal debut on Wednesday night.
Toronto is the first team in the expansion era (since 1967-68) to have rookies combine for the first six goals to start a season, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Van Riemsdyk broke up that streak 1:17 after Marner's goal.
Set up by Bozak, who had two assists on the night, van Riemsdyk wheeled into the slot and slung a low backhand past Khudobin. It was the first goal of the season for the 27-year-old, who missed most of last year with a foot injury.
Half of Toronto's first six shots beat Khudobin, who was starting his first game of the season.
Pastrnak struck on a late-period power play. John-Michael Liles sucked in the defense as he crept in from the left point before finding Pastrnak, who fired a shot in to an open cage.
It was the final salvo in a busy first period, which also included an unlikely fight between Nazem Kadri and David Backes. The two fought last season while Backes was still playing for the St. Louis Blues.
Boston, which came back from a 3-1 deficit to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets in its season opener, pushed back in the middle period but was unable to beat Andersen on nine shots.
The 27-year-old Andersen was roughed up for five goals in his Leafs debut on Wednesday, but delivered a stable performance on Saturday.
The game was often played at high speeds with mistakes by the Leafs young players, particularly in the second period, resulting in chances and sustained offensive zone time for the Bruins. After getting four goals against Ottawa in a historic NHL debut, Matthews was relatively quiet in his hometown debut, finishing with no points and two shots.
The Leafs speed and skill was again apparent, though, and whatever comeback chances the Bruins had were quickly dashed in the third period when Michalek tapped in a point pass from Morgan Rielly.
The game turned testy a short while later when Matt Martin delivered a crunching hit in the Bruins zone on Torey Krug. Martin, the league's long-reigning hits leader, then fought Boston captain Zdeno Chara.
NOTES: The Maple Leafs retired 17 sweaters in a pre-game ceremony, altering a long-standing team policy where jersey numbers were honored but not retired.
Bruins: Conclude their season-opening three-game trip Monday night at Winnipeg.
Maple Leafs: Begin a three-game trip Wednesday night at Winnipeg.