Anthony Beauvillier New York Islanders Toronto Maple Leafs Mitch Marner

TORONTO — Sheldon Keefe’s team was already dealing with the loss of two key pieces of the blue line.

The Maple Leafs’ patchwork defensive corps could have suffered another major setback on a night that ended in more 3-on-3 frustration.

Anthony Beauvillier scored at 1:56 of overtime Monday as the New York Islanders rallied from a goal down late in the third period to defeat Toronto 3-2 in a game that saw the home team lose No. 1 defenseman Morgan Rielly due to injury.

“We played a good game of hockey,” Keefe said. “We deserved better.”

Noah Dobson, with a goal and an assist, and Josh Bailey scored in regulation for New York (12-8-0), which got 30 saves from Ilya Sorokin.

John Tavares and Auston Matthews responded for Toronto (10-5-5). Erik Kallgren made 21 stops for the Leafs, who lost their fifth straight game that went to overtime this season. Mitch Marner added an assist to extend his scoring streak to 13 contests.

Rielly was injured in an awkward collision with Islanders forward Kyle Palmieri early in the third and did not return.

Keefe said his top minute-eating defender will have diagnostic imaging Tuesday to determine the extent of the injury at a club that no longer has Jake Muzzin (neck) and TJ Brodie (oblique).

“It’s tough,” Keefe said of the possibility of losing Rielly. “We’re already short of guys and Morgan is very important to our team.”

The coach also believes in the depth of the organization.

“We lost Muzzin, we made a big deal out of it, it wasn’t a big deal,” Keefe said. “Brodie, he made a big deal, it wasn’t a big deal. We just have to keep playing.”

“So are the things”.

Marner, who also had a 13-game point streak last season, said he will be the “next man up” at the back.

“People have been taking a big step forward,” he said. “Whatever has to happen next, whoever has to step up or what happens next, I’m sure whoever is in that place will be up for the challenge and excited for the role.”

Beauvillier hit his fourth career goal of the season after receiving a pass from Brock Nelson in the overtime against a disjointed group of Leafs who froze the puck twice in overtime.

“I wanted to scream,” the winger said after finding the back of the net for the first time in 11 games. “I felt relief.”

Down 1-0 after Dobson made his sixth on a deflected shot in the first quarter, the Leafs got their revenge at 4:49 of the second on a power play when Tavares, who left New York in free agency in July 2018 after nine seasons on Long Island, he shot his 11th past Sorokin.

The Islanders goalkeeper then stole Jarnkrok Street on a Toronto flurry before Matthews scored his ninth off a deflection at 14:06.

After Jarnkrok blew a great opportunity from the slot late in the third, Bailey buried his fourth to tie it 2-2 with 2:58 remaining in regulation after a mix-up in the defensive zone set the stage for the win by visitors in extra time.

“We played pretty good for most of the game,” Matthews said. “We controlled the game and limited a lot of their chances, but they made a little mistake and forced extra time.

“Then it’s anybody’s game.”

Now the Leafs will wait for word on Rielly.

ROBERTSON LOOKS AGAIN

Toronto winger Nick Robertson was in the press box as a healthy scratch for the fourth game in a row.

The 21-year-old scored twice in his season debut on October 20 against Dallas, including the winner in overtime, after being sent to the AHL out of training camp due to salary cap concerns. He has just three assists in nine games since.

Robertson, who doesn’t have to clear waivers to be sent to the minors, has averaged 11 minutes, 19 seconds of ice time when he’s been in the Leafs’ lineup.

“I’m not going to answer this question every day,” Keefe said of the status of the 2019 second-round pick Monday morning. “There are a lot of benefits to being in the NHL for a young player.”

CLUTTERBUCK A SUCCESS

Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck was credited with nine hits to give him 3,641 in his career, which surpassed former Los Angeles Kings captain Dustin Brown for the all-time NHL record since the league began leading the account in 2005-06.

“It means I played long enough to get a chance to do it more than anybody else,” said Clutterbuck, 35, who suited up for his 951st regular-season game after New York’s morning skate.

“Is part of my job”.

UNTIL NEXT TIME

Leafs: Open a four-game road trip Wednesday in New Jersey.

Islanders: Host Edmonton on Wednesday.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on November 21, 2022.

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