Matthews, Johnsson help Leafs take 2-1 series lead over Bruins

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With Nazem Kadri and the apparent voluntary forfeiture of depth through the middle dominating the discourse leading into Game 3, the focus was directed primarily to William Nylander's transition to third-line centre and the heightened pressure that now faced the Toronto Maple Leafs' top two units. Kadri cross-checked DeBrusk in the third period after a series of physical exchanges throughout the game, earning himself a five-minute major and a game misconduct.

The NHL's department of public safety tweeted it had offered Kadri an in-person hearing.

There is the possibility that Babcock won't have to worry about that until next season if the Leafs are ousted by the Bruins, considering the length of suspension that many expect.

A Foggy Jake DeBrusk spoke to reporters after the game but would not discuss the hit and sais he doesn't even really remember it.

Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock was impressed with Marner's willingness to sacrifice his own body in the dying minutes of the game. "Obviously, Kadri stayed down, I mean that's his prerogative when you get hit". You have to own your play, you have to own your discipline, you have to own what's going on. "In the end, Naz has someone else making a decision whether he's playing or not".

Kadri was suspended three games in the 2018 first-round playoff series between the clubs for charging and delivering a blow to the head of Boston forward Tommy Wingels. He's also been fined on three occasions - twice for diving/embellishment and once for an inappropriate throat-slashing gesture - making this the eighth instance where he's been tapped on the shoulder by the National Hockey League to explain himself.

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Kadri's suspension, while odd in it not being a set number of games, was expected.

"Just a team effort", Rielly said. "We've just got to move on".

There was an expectant feeling in the air as Auston Matthews scored his first of the post-season and Frederik Andersen stopped 35 shots Monday to give Toronto a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series.

It was night and day from Game 2 in Boston, when the Bruins bullied their way to a 4-1 victory.

But the Bruins quickly reminded the Leafs why they finished ahead of them in the Atlantic Division race when Leafs defenceman Jake Muzzin took a holding penalty late in the period. "It's our turn to come out with a push". In re-watching the video of the knee-on-knee hit on Kadri, it appears that they ran into each other. They had scored a cumulative five goals in two games and allowed six. That helped the Leafs keep their equilibrium, but the Bruins were defensively sound, getting in front of a lot of Leafs shots in the early going.

Kadri has the right to appeal through the NHL Players' Association to NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. If the Leafs are eliminated, Kadri, who has played 10 seasons and 591 games in Toronto, could face an uncertain off-season. As a bonus, they showed that they can at least slow the deadly line of Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, and David Pastrnak, as that trio was unable to generate a single point on Monday.

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