Jordie Benn scores as Maple Leafs beat Canucks 3-2

TORONTO (AP) — Jordie Benn snapped a second-period tie in his first game with Toronto, sending the Maple Leafs to a 3-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night.

Auston Matthews and Pierre Engvall also scored for Toronto, and Erik Kallgren made 28 saves. Kallgren stopped 19 shots in Friday night’s 4-2 loss to Pittsburgh.

“Really wanted to win,” Kallgren said. “Really wanted to come up with a good performance.”

Bo Horvat and J.T. Miller scored for Vancouver. Spencer Martin stopped 32 shots for the struggling Canucks, who blew their sixth multigoal lead of the season.

Vancouver led 2-0 after one, but Toronto got on the board when Matthews scored a power-play goal 1:46 into the second period. It was Matthews’ seventh of the season.

Engvall then tied it at 2 at 6:27 as Toronto kept up the pressure. Benn, who had been sidelined by a preseason groin injury and entered the lineup for an ailing T.J. Brodie, pinched down from his defensive position to score against his former team at 10:01.

“It doesn’t happen too often,” Benn said in the wake of his first goal since January. “Didn’t really know what to do. Thank God (Matthews) came and I was just like, ‘All right, here’s a hug.’”

Brock Boeser hit the post for Vancouver on a power play early in the third, and Kallgren snagged an Andrei Kuzmenko shot later in the period off a turnover.

Vancouver opened the scoring at 3:41 of the first when Horvat tipped in his 13th. Miller then put the visitors up 2-0 on a power play at 12:11 when he fired his eighth past a screened Kallgren.

“We played an unbelievable first,” Horvat said. “Every time we take 10 minutes off, it just kills us.”

WORTH NOTING

Kallgren made his eighth appearance of 2022-23 with Matt Murray and Ilya Samsonov sidelined by injuries. Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said Murray is targeting Tuesday in Pittsburgh for his return.

UP NEXT

Canucks: At Boston on Sunday night for the fifth of a six-game trip.

Maple Leafs: At Pittsburgh on Tuesday night before returning for a three-game homestand.

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