In an entertaining affair at Ricoh Coliseum on Saturday the Maple Leafs ended their preseason schedule with a 3-2 shootout loss to the Detroit Red Wings. Toronto iced a lineup comprised mainly of players destined for the Marlies, having dressed the bulk of their opening night roster in their game 24 hours earlier.
Eric Fehr opened the scoring for Toronto on the power play with a deflection in the slot. Goaltender Curtis McElhinney was summoned to make more than a fair share of difficult saves including a pair of breakaway stops on Justin Abdelkader over the first two periods.
Detroit’s Michael Rasmussen tied the game on a man advantage after Travis Dermott (pictured) took a late second period penalty.
The Leafs pressed for the go-ahead goal in the later half of the third period, but couldn’t get the puck past Jared Coreau despite some glorious chances from Andreas Johnsson and Carl Grundstrom.
With 2:51 remaining in regulation, Matt Lorito scored off the rush to put Detroit ahead with what looked like the game-winner. But with McElhinney on the bench for a sixth skater, Dermott atoned for his earlier penalty and wired a shot past Coreau from the point to send the game into overtime.
In the shootout, Fehr was the only Leaf player to score. Nikita Soshnikov and Connor Carrick each missed their attempts.
“Lou (Lamoriello) will get together at noon tomorrow and we’ll go through what’s happened in camp and do our best to make the decisions so that we can make those announcements on Monday,” coach Mike Babcock said of the forthcoming final roster cuts.
The Leafs open the regular season on Wednesday in Winnipeg.