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ds beat 2010 French Open champion Franc

Postby kaisy on Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:38 am

TORONTO – James Reimer could only imagine what was going through the mind of his head coach as the Leafs nearly slipped and fell en route to victory on Wednesday night. "His heart probably stopped a few times," Reimer grinned, "as did most of ours I think." Clinging to a rapidly evaporating lead in the final minutes and moments of regulation, Reimer and the Leafs eventually held on for a 5-4 win against the Senators, their third straight victory and fifth in the past six games at home. "We won the hockey game and we got two points," Randy Carlyle said simply afterward. "Is it a masterpiece? You be the judge." Carlyles group found a way to win – again. And perhaps thats emblematic of their relative success at the halfway mark of the season – they sit fifth in the East with 30 points. Not always pretty, not always sharp, not always smooth, the Leafs have found different ways to emerge victorious, helped on this night by a standout effort from their top line. "Youre not always going to play your best," Reimer continued, now 6-1-1 career against the Senators, "your goaltenders arent going to be the best, your [defencemen], your forwards some games, and youve got to find a way to pull through as a team. I think thats a great trait to have. From a coaching aspect I think they want to see a full 60 minutes and everyone pulling their weight, but having said that when we dont bring our best but we can still win I count that as a positive." Opportunistic in their offensive flurries and yet not quite sharp in large doses, the Leafs raced out to a pair of three-goal leads – including a 3-0 mark early in the middle period – with Ottawa trimming the gap to one in each instance. Phil Kessel and Nazem Kadri scored to push the margin to 5-2 at the midway point of the final frame before the Senators scored twice, transforming a game that appeared over into a final minute nail-biter. "The bottom line is we gave up too many shots, too many scoring chances," Dion Phaneuf said with the Senators managing 43 shots on Reimer, "but a wins a win and we move forward." While his team has certainly surprised with its collective effort at the midway point of the 48-game schedule, Carlyle wisely refused to paint a perfect picture, pointing to the need for continued improvement. "To me its all irrelevant right now," he said. "Were halfway through a season. Weve got a lot of work ahead of us. Were going to meet some real good hockey clubs and it starts [Thursday] night in Boston." Five Points 1. Rolling at home After a mediocre start in their home rink – one win in their first five – the Leafs are suddenly rolling with five wins in their last six at the Air Canada Centre. Theyve outscored the opposition 22-14 in that span, three of the five victories coming by two goals or more. "We werent thrilled with the way we started at home either," Mark Fraser explained to TSN.ca before the most recent victory. "It wasnt just the media or the fans. Thats something we collectively wanted to buckle down and just improve on and throughout the month of February we were able to get better with that." With nine of 13 games this month in their building (theyve won the first two), finding a groove in Toronto at this point is paramount. Like Mondays victory over New Jersey, Wednesdays effort against Ottawa wasnt pretty, but at the end of the day the Leafs managed to do just enough for the win. "We can win at home and on the road and not in a neutral place," Reimer joked afterward. 2. Top Line steps up Generally quiet in recent games, the Leafs top line continued what had begun to take shape in the third period of Mondays victory over the Devils. Kessel and his linemates, Tyler Bozak and James van Riemsdyk, managed three of the five Toronto goals with each member of the unit chipping in with a marker. "I think weve been working pretty hard as a line," Kessel said. "We got a couple bounces today which was nice." The 25-year-old led the way with his second three-point effort of the year (one goal, two assists); Wednesday marked just the second multi-point night for Bozak and fifth for van Riemsdyk, who leads the team with 13 goals. "We need not just one line, two lines, we need all three and four lines going," Carlyle said. "We need six D that play the night and the goalie thats in the net at the time to give us their best. And I dont think weve gotten that from our hockey club yet. And thats whats so encouraging for us as a coaching staff because I dont think weve had everybody going on one given night to prove to us or to prove to themselves how good we can be. Weve had too many interruptions I would say." 3. Ominous start Frazer McLaren said Dave Dziurzynski actually declined to fight off a defensive zone faceoff in the opening minute of Wednesdays game. "I asked him and he actually said no so I thought we werent going to go," McLaren said, "and then he ended up dropping his stuff there when the puck dropped." McLaren caught Dziurzynski with a glancing right hand, instantly knocking him unconscious, his face slamming with a thud on the ice. "I mustve just caught him," McLaren continued. "If you catch someone in the right spot (it) doesnt necessarily have to be the hardest punch, you can be knocked out pretty easy." The 25-year-old checked with doctors in between periods to make sure Dziurzynski, who was ruled to have suffered a concussion, was okay. "Those are big tough men fighting," Carlyle said. "You just wish the trainer would get there quicker, thats really the only thought I had is get there as soon as possible." 4. Reimer vs. Senators Like his teammates, Reimer was admittedly far from perfect, but still managed to piece together another win over Ottawa. The 24-year-old is 6-1-1 in his career against the Senators with a 1.99 goals against average and .937 save percentage. "I think as a group in here we want to clamp down and not be giving up so many goals in the third and obviously that starts with me," he said, "Ive got to find a way to make some more saves." Reimer has won all three of his starts since he returned from a knee injury and now sits with a 9-3-0 mark for the year with a 2.56 goals against average and .921 save percentage. 5. Holzer locked up Korbinian Holzer kept relatively quiet after he and the Leafs agreed to a two-year extension on Tuesday. "I didnt call anybody," he told TSN.ca before the Senators game. "Obviously Im happy, but for me its not a big deal. Im just one player of a big team and a big group. I dont want to take too much out of it. A lot of people called me and congratulated me and Im very thankful for that, but for me I never really will call people and tell them Hey I just signed." A fourth round selection from the 2006 Draft, Holzer is one of a number of John Ferguson Jr. era prospects (Matt Frattin, James Reimer, Carl Gunnarsson, Nik Kulemin, Leo Komarov) now finding a place with the Leafs, suiting up in his 16th consecutive game since being recalled in early February. "The mandate that we determined over the course of the summer was going to be that we had to find out if he could play in the NHL," Carlyle said Wednesday morning. "You have to find out if those guys can play. There was a team that historically had done that better than any team in the league and that was the Montreal Canadiens in the Sam Pollock era. They made sure, they were 100 per cent sure that they knew their players. Were talking about a different era, but thats basically what their mandate was; they never wanted to give up on a player until they were 100 per cent sure [of] the projections and the possibilities of what he was going to be." Quote of the Night "We won the hockey game and we got two points. Is it a masterpiece? You be the judge." -Randy Carlyle, on his teams performance in their second win against Ottawa this season. Stat Watch 6 games: Kadri extended his point streak with his 10th goal of the year. The 22-year-old has posted five goals and five assists during the six-game span. 4 games: Cody Franson extended his point streak to a modest four games with his fourth assist in four games. 91 per cent: Leafs penalty kill over the past 14 games (40-44), including a perfect 1-for-1 effort against the Senators. 6-5-0: Leafs record at home this season. 24: Fights for the Leafs this season, good for top spot according to hockeyfights.com. Minute Watch 15:40: Tyler Bozak, his second lowest total of the season. Injury Watch Joffrey Lupul – 21 games (arm)Matt Frattin – 11 games (knee) Up Next The Leafs head to Boston for a Thursday night matchup with the Bruins at TD Garden. Buccaneers Ronde Barber Jersey . Pity. Ty Lawson had 21 points and 10 assists, Danilo Gallinari scored 20 points and hit a big 3-pointer with 13.8 seconds left, and the Nuggets beat the struggling Lakers 112-105 Sunday night for their fifth win in seven games. Red Ronde Barber Jersey . For the first time ever, TSN and Global will share resources to produce original Canadian preview and post-round highlight shows with SportsCentres Cory Woron, Globals Kevin Smith, as well as Bob Weeks and Jim Nelford. http://www.buccaneersportsfanstore.com/ ... sb-96.html . Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. Philadelphia lost the last two installments of a three-game weekend set in Atlanta and is coming off Sundays 3-2 setback in the series finale. Buccaneers Mike Alstott Jersey . His 83 other appearances were all starts. And 30 of those were as captain. Stalteri, who has not played since undergoing two hip surgeries in May and July 2011, formally announced his retirement Wednesday. Vincent Jackson Jersey . Ibaka is a force to be reckoned with, and what better way to show it than by delivering his best game of the season against a rival who had a player take a jab at him on Twitter? Ibaka tied his career best with 25 points and grabbed a season-high 17 rebounds, and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the San Antonio Spurs 107-93 Monday night for their 11th straight win.ROME -- Venus Williams lost in the first round of the Italian Open to Laura Robson. Now sister Serena will get a chance to even the score. Robson, a quickly improving 19-year-old British player, beat Venus Williams 6-3, 6-2 on Monday to set up a second-round match with top-ranked Serena. Robson won the Wimbledon junior title at 14 and at last weeks Madrid Open, she upset fourth-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska before losing in the third round to 16th-seeded Ana Ivanovic in a third-set tiebreaker. "I just like it on big courts against these huge players because I just go out there with nothing to lose," the 39th-ranked Robson said. "I can remember seeing (Venus) play at Wimbledon when I was about 10 and I was kind of blown away with the speed that she hit the ball. "Today when she hit it in the centre of the racket it was basically point over, so I just had to take my chances." Both players struggled with the wind at the Foro Italico, with Robson hitting eight double-faults and Williams six. However, Williams errors came at more inopportune times, with two double-faults in the final game. "Its always hard to play high quality tennis in that wind," Robson said. "I wish it could have been a higher standard but Im happy to have won." Serena, who won the Madrid title Sunday, watched the match from the stands. "(Robson) has a great game," the younger Williams sister said. "Shes really young, still. Shes just so free and she looks great on the court and shes so smooth and shes a lefty, so that just adds a notch to her whole level. "Ive never played her before. Ive always wanted to. So I have a tough second-round match." Serenas only title at this clay-court tournament came in 2002 but if she continues playing the way she did in Madrid -- and in her previous two tournaments, which she also won -- shell be difficult to beat. &"She is playing probably her best tennis," Robson said.dddddddddddd"So its going to be insanely tough but Im just going to go out there and do my best." This tournament is the last major warm-up for the French Open, the years second Grand Slam, which starts May 26. The top 32 players get seeded for Grand Slams. "Ive said since the start of the year that I wanted to be seeded for Wimbledon and it would be great if I were to be seeded for Roland Garros as well," Robson said. The top-eight seeded players in Rome have first-round byes. In other matches, ninth-seeded Samantha Stosur cruised past Su-Wei Hsieh of Taiwan 6-2, 6-3; two-time champion Jelena Jankovic overpowered Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria 6-3, 6-0; Sabine Lisicki of Germany eliminated American qualifier Mallory Burdette 6-1, 6-2; and Italian wild-card entry Nastassja Burnett defeated 2008 finalist Alize Cornet of France 6-2, 6-2. In a night match that was suspended briefly due to a lights outage, 59th-ranked Kiki Bertens of Netherlands beat 2010 French Open champion Francesca Schiavone 7-6 (5), 6-1. In mens action, 11th-seeded Marin Cilic beat Andrey Golubev of Kazakhstan 6-4, 6-2 and Italian wild card Potito Starace rallied past Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 to set up a match against second-seeded Roger Federer. In a late match, 16th-seeded Kei Nishikori of Japan dispatched Italian wild card Paolo Lorenzi 6-2, 6-4. Nishikori, who upset Roger Federer in Madrid last week, called for a trainer while leading 4-3 in the second set to tend to his right thigh but did not appear slowed while closing the match out. Meanwhile, 10th-seeded Janko Tipsarevic withdrew from the tournament with bronchitis and Lukas Rosol took his place in the draw. Also, sixth-seeded Angelique Kerber withdrew with an abdominal injury and was replaced by Lourdes Dominguez Lino of Spain. ' ' '
kaisy
 
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