The Toronto Maple Leafs can extend their points streak to 13 games while Mitchell Marner tries to stretch his to 21 games Thursday night against the visiting Los Angeles Kings.
Marner earned an assist Tuesday in the 4-0 victory over the host Dallas Stars to improve his team-record points streak to 20 games.
The victory also was the 12th straight game (9-0-3) in which the Maple Leafs have picked up at least one point.
The franchise record is 16 games, which was set during the 2003-04 season.
Marner assisted on the opening goal Tuesday by captain John Tavares and has nine goals and 18 assists during his streak.
“There’s a lot that goes into something like that,” Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said, “He gets on the board early and contributes to that first goal to help us get a lead in the game. He’s then called on to play some very difficult minutes with the amount of penalties (seven, including a double minor) we took. He’s outstanding in that way, too. “
The difference in the game, however, was the play of Matt Murray, who made 44 saves to earn his first shutout of the season and 15th career.
“(Murray) was really solid for us,” Keefe said. “That five-on-three was incredible. He was outstanding. I’m happy for him.”
“I don’t know if there are words for that,” said Auston Matthews, who had a goal and an assist. “That was special. The end of the second, that penalty-kill, a lot of credit goes to Murray. He stood on his head. He made some unbelievable saves, just special.”
Toronto lost defenseman Victor Mete (lower-body injury) in the first period Tuesday.
“He’s going to miss some time,” Keefe said. “We don’t think it’s going to be anything too serious, but I don’t expect him to be available for us the rest of this week.”
The Kings, meanwhile, opened a six-game road trip with a 5-2 victory Tuesday over the Ottawa Senators.
Viktor Arvidsson scored twice for Los Angeles.
“I think we played fast and we executed,” Arvidsson said. “They did, too, but I think we made better decisions with the puck and we were more effective.”
Kevin Fiala added a goal and an assist, and captain Anze Kopitar had three assists for the Kings. Pheonix Copley made 31 saves.
Kings coach Todd McLellan was pleased by the total effort in Ottawa.
“I thought it was a complete game by everybody,” McLellan said. “We didn’t have to rely on one or two people. Starting with the goaltender, I thought he played really well, gave us some confidence, made a big save in the third period that could have been a game changer. Throughout the lineup, I thought we had a real good effort, we executed some of the things that we wanted and we learned some lessons.”
Kings left winger Alex Iafallo had one assist in 12:34 of ice time Tuesday after missing 23 games with a lower-body injury.
“He’s just steady,” McLellan said. “He does a lot of little things. You could see early in the first period, he was ready to go.”
The Kings defeated the Maple Leafs 4-2 on Oct. 29 in Los Angeles.
–Field Level Media