Phil Kessel scored twice, and the Toronto Maple Leafs netted four goals during a nine-minute stretch to chase Vezina Trophy-winner Tuukka Rask and rout the Boston Bruins 6-1 on Wednesday night.
Toronto (9-5-2) moved ahead of Boston (10-7-0) in the Atlantic Division.
Kessel now has 10 goals this season. Morgan Rielly, Tyler Bozak, James van Riemsdyk and Peter Holland also scored for the Maple Leafs. Jonathan Bernier was solid in making 25 saves despite not being tested much.
Rask allowed four goals on 16 shots before being replaced by backup Niklas Svedberg in the second period. Dennis Seidenberg scored Boston’s only goal.
The Maple Leafs were motivated by their 4-1 loss to Boston on Oct. 26. Toronto coach Randy Carlyle said Wednesday morning that his team hadn’t forgotten that game.
Toronto got off to a better start than in recent days. In their previous three games, the Maple Leafs allowed a goal within the first three minutes.
They controlled play early, and Rask prevented Bozak from scoring 52 seconds in with a stick-on-post save. Rask couldn’t do much a few minutes later when Kessel got going.
After the puck got past rookie defenseman Zach Trotman along the boards, Kessel skated down the right wing and took a perfect snap shot that went into the top corner far side at 6:46.
Toronto led 1-0 after the first and poured it on in the second. Kessel scored 18 seconds in, beating Rask glove side.
Rielly made it 3-0 at 1:34 by firing in a rebound after Holland’s shot went off Rask’s left pad.
On a power play at 3:32, Bozak scored his sixth on a give-and-go with van Riemsdyk. Rask was then pulled from the game.
Svedberg played well but was helpless on the Maple Leafs’ double-deflection, power-play goal that made it 5-0. Jake Gardiner’s shot went off Bozak and then van Riemsdyk at 9:51.
The Bruins got one back at 14:16 when Seidenberg beat Bernier with a wrist shot through traffic.
Holland added on at 7:21 of the third while Toronto was on a power play.
NOTES: Toronto D Stephane Robidas played in his 900th NHL game. He left the game briefly in the first period after blocking a shot. … With an assist on Kessel’s first goal, Cody Franson extended his point streak to five games. … Bruins C David Krejci missed his second straight game and fourth in five with an undisclosed injury. Krejci didn’t travel with the team, so he isn’t expected to play Thursday at Montreal. … Bruins D Matt Bartkowski was a healthy scratch for the sixth straight game.