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TORONTO (AP) The Toronto Maple Leafs know they’ve just completed the best statistical season in franchise history
And Frederik Andersen knows he now holds the team’s all-time record for goalie wins in a season.What remains a mystery for the Leafs is their first-round playoff opponent.Andersen made 31 saves to pick up his 38th victory of the season Saturday and Toronto closed out its schedule by defeating the Montreal Canadiens 4-2.The Leafs finished with a club-record 105 points – bettering the 103 earned in the pre-lockout 2003-04 season before the shootout was introduced to break ties – but will have to wait until the Boston Bruins play the Florida Panthers on Sunday to see where they open their next playoff chapter.A win for the Bruins over the Panthers
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, who have been eliminated from postseason contention, would see Boston move into first in the Atlantic Division and set up a meeting between Tampa Bay and Toronto.A victory in regulation for the Panthers, meanwhile, would see the Leafs and Bruins square off.Asked if he would be watching Sunday’s finale, a makeup game after Boston and Florida were snowed out in January, Andersen indicated he has other plans.”No,” he said. ”I’m going to watch the Masters.”Auston Matthews scored his 34th goal of the season to match his jersey number and added an assist for Toronto (49-26-7), which also set club records for overall victories and home wins (29).Zach Hyman, Nazem Kadri and Patrick Marleau had the other goals for the Leafs, who are going to the playoffs for the second consecutive spring. Jake Gardiner added two assists.Andersen’s 37 victories coming in saw him sit tied with Ed Belfour (2002-03) and Andrew Raycroft (2006-07) for the most by a Toronto goalie in a season.Now he sits alone in first.”It’s fun when you set goals at the beginning of the year and then you achieve some of them,” Andersen said. ”It goes without saying that there are bigger goals.”Leafs coach Mike Babcock was pleased to see his team come through for its goalie in a game that didn’t mean anything in the standings.”He’s been a huge part of our team
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,” Babcock said. ”That record is a special, special thing.”Daniel Carr and Jeff Petry scored for Montreal (29-40-13). Carey Price stopped 26 shots for the visitors as the Canadiens wrapped up a disappointing season.The players observed a moment of silence before the game to honor the victims of Friday’s horrific crash in Saskatchewan that saw a tractor-trailer collide with a bus carrying a junior hockey team, killing 15 people and injuring 14 others.The Leafs and Canadiens also sported Broncos decals on their helmets.Tied 1-1 through 40 minutes, Hyman chipped a rebound past Price just 37 seconds into the third for his 15th goal and 40th point of the season after Matthews took the initial shot.Andersen made a good stop on Brendan Gallagher’s one-timer with four minutes to go, before the Leafs went to the power play with 3:45 left when Michael McCarron hacked Matthews to the ice with the center bearing down on what could have been his 35th goal.But Kadri wouldn’t be denied with 2:50 left when he backhanded his 32nd over Price before Petry then scored his 12th with 40.2 seconds left in regulation.Marleau put things to bed with his 27th on a Price mistake with 9.8 seconds still on the clock as the Canadiens limped to the finish line after topping the Atlantic with 103 points last season.”We’re still playing the game we love,” Gallagher said. ”But the games haven’t been meaningful.”Just never want to feel this (way) or go through this ever again.”Down 1-0 after Matthews extended his point streak to 10 games – he now has seven goals and seven assists over that span – late in the first, the Canadiens came close when Andersen denied Gallagher twice on a power play in the second.”He’s been unbelievable for us, probably our best player all year,” Matthews said the Leafs goalie. ”He’s kept us in games, won us games all throughout the year and been a brick wall.”Montreal got even with 3:56 left in the second when Carr scored his sixth on a rebound.Matthews struck on the power play with 1:55 left in the first when William Nylander wheeled down from the point, froze Price and delivered a sweet cross-ice feed for a wide-open net to get the ball rolling on a milestone night.Now all the Leafs can do is sit and wait to find out where they’ll open the playoffs next week as the Atlantic’s No. 3 seed – either Boston or Tampa.”We don’t know who we’re playing
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,” Babcock said. ”Both teams are very good hockey clubs.”We’re in for a great test and it should be a lot of fun.”UP NEXT:Canadiens: Season over.Maple Leafs: first round of the playoffs.— Matt Martin is going back to the New York Islanders.The Toronto Maple Leafs have dealt the feisty forward to the Islanders, who drafted him in 2008. The Leafs get minor-league goalie Eamon McAdam in the deal.Also on Tuesday, the Islanders agreed to a one-year, $1.5 million deal with goalie Robin Lehner. Lehner had a 3.01 goals-against average with a .908 save percentage in 53 games with the Buffalo Sabres last season.The Sabres declined to give Lehner a $4 million qualifying offer as a restricted free agent and relinquished his rights. He will try to improve the Islanders goaltending which allowed a league-high 293 goals last season.Martin signed a four-year, $10 million deal with the Leafs prior to the 2016 season. After playing every game in his first season with the Leafs, Martin suited up for just 50 games this past season and did not dress for Toronto’s seven-game playoff series against the Boston Bruins.In 132 games for the Leafs, the 29-year-old Martin had eight goals, 13 assists and 173 penalty minutes.The 23-year-old McAdam split the 2017-18 season between Bridgeport of the AHL and Worcester of the ECHL. A third-round pick of the Islanders in 2013, McAdam has not played in the NHL.The move comes two days after the Leafs beat out the Islanders for marquee free agent John Tavares, who had been with New York since starting his NHL career in 2009.It marks the first trade between new Leafs GM Kyle Dubas and the man who preceded him in that role – Islanders GM Lou Lamoriello.—
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