MONTREAL — Jake Gardiner scored only 16 seconds into overtime to lift the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 2-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens in NHL pre-season play Tuesday night.
What was supposed to be 3-on-3 overtime became 4-on-3 when the Canadiens Devante Smith-Pelley took a tripping penalty with 37 seconds left in regulation time.
Once into overtime, it didn’t take long for Gardiner to take a feed from Brad Boyes and lift a shot over Zach Fucale from close range.
A pair of first round draft picks provided the regulation time scoring as Michael McCarron got one in the first period for Montreal and William Nylander equalized in the second for the Leafs.
McCarron broke alone to pick up a ricochet of Jeff Petry’s shot into the slot and beat Antoine Bibeau 15:45 into the first frame.
Nylander was Toronto’s most dangerous forward all game and he was rewarded with 29 seconds left in the second period when he went in on a two-on-one, fed Gardiner and got the pass back for a tap-in goal on Fucale.
In regulation time, Carey Price started for Montreal and stopped all his 11 shots. Fucale allowed two goals on 16 shots.
Bibeau gave up one goal on 14 shots, while Garrett Sparks blanked the Canadiens on seven shots.
The Leafs started the minimum seven NHL players while Montreal had 10.
Bill Beacon, The Canadian Press