NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — John Tavares scored two goals and added an assist, Joseph Woll made 22 saves and the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Nashville Predators 3-2 on Sunday night.
Alexander Kerfoot also scored for Toronto, which has won two of its last three. The Maple Leafs are seven points ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning for second place in the Atlantic Division with Toronto having one game in hand. Auston Matthews had two assists.
Tyson Barrie had a goal and an assist, Cody Glass also scored and Kevin Lankinen made 31 saves for Nashville, which lost back-to-back home games over the weekend. The Predators remain five points behind the Winnipeg Jets for the Western Conference’s second wild-card berth, with Nashville having played two fewer games.
Tavares scored the game’s first goal at 18:06 of the opening period. With the Maple Leafs on a power play, Tavares beat Lankinen from the low slot after a slick tick-tack-toe passing sequence from Matthews and Mitchell Marner.
Kerfoot doubled the Toronto lead at 1:02 of the second with a wrist shot from the top of the left faceoff circle that beat Lankinen high to the far side.
Glass spoiled Woll’s shutout bid at 12:37 of the third with a power-play goal, but Tavares scored his second on the power play at 15:09 to restore the two-goal lead. Tavares leads the Maple Leafs in power-play goals with 15.
Barrie scored at 18:18 with Lankinen pulled for an extra attacker, but the Predators could not find the equalizer.
POWER-PLAY WOES END
Nashville finished 1-for-4 on the power play Sunday. The Predators had failed to score with the man advantage in the previous seven games. After coming up empty in their first three power-play opportunities Sunday, Glass’ power-play goal snapped an 0-for-20 stretch.
Predators forward Matt Duchene left early in the second period after being struck in the left hand with a slap shot off the stick of teammate Dante Fabbro. Duchene immediately skated off the ice, removing his glove from the hand while doing so.
The Predators did not provide an update on Duchene during the game.
Nashville has been besieged with injuries recently. The Predators are already without the services of Filip Forsberg, Ryan Johansen, Roman Josi and Alexandre Carrier.
500 FOR MARNER
Marner played his 500th career NHL game. His assist on Tavares’ first-period power-play goal extended his point-scoring streak to 10 games, the fourth such streak of his career.
Predators: Visit the Boston Bruins on Tuesday.
Maple Leafs: Host the Florida Panthers on Wednesday.