A big reason why the Maple Leafs fell into a 3-0 hole is because their top four scorers -- John Tavares, Auston Matthews, William Nylander and Mitch Marner -- have struggled mightily, failing to score a single goal in the series. However, Nylander and Marner flipped the script on Wednesday, scoring a goal apiece to give Toronto exactly enough offensive firepower to survive another day.
Nylander opened the game's scoring at 3:39 of the second period, and Marner made the Leafs' lead a bit more comfortable by adding a goal of his own at 10:03 of the third.
Florida responded with a Sam Reinhart goal two minutes after Marner's score, but that turned out to be all the offense the Panthers could muster. Maple Leafs goalie Joseph Woll was instrumental in shutting down the Panthers' offense, making 24 saves on 25 shots in his very first playoff start. Ilya Samsonov, the Leafs' usual netminder, missed the game with an upper-body injury.
With the series heading to Toronto for Game 5, the Maple Leafs will enter with the hope of becoming the fifth team in NHL playoff history to successfully rally back from a 3-0 deficit. The Panthers will hope to end things and move on to their first Eastern Conference Final since 1996.
Game 5 will take place Friday at a time yet to be determined.
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