NHL

Matthews scores 51st goal as Maple Leafs double up Flyers for 4th straight win

Auston Matthews scored his NHL-leading 51st goal, Morgan Rielly had a goal and two assists, and the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs won their fourth straight with a 6-3 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday night.

Rielly collects goal, 2 assists for Toronto in 6-3 victory

Maple Leafs' Auston Matthews, left, celebrates with Mitchell Marner after scoring a goal during the third period of Toronto's 6-3 win over the Flyers on Saturday night in Philadelphia. (Derik Hamilton/The Associated Press)

Auston Matthews scored his NHL-leading 51st goal, Morgan Rielly had a goal and two assists, and the Toronto Maple Leafs won their fourth straight with a 6-3 victory over the visiting Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday night.

John Tavares, Wayne Simmonds, Timothy Liljegren and Pierre Engvall also scored for the Maple Leafs, who have netted 24 goals during their streak.

Ivan Provorov had two goals and an assist and Kevin Hayes also scored for the Flyers, who have lost five of six. Philadelphia entered tied for last with New Jersey in the Metropolitan Division.

Toronto overcame a slow start.

"Not a very good hockey game by us," Toronto coach Sheldon Keefe said. "Maybe we showed up for an easy game and they didn't give it to us. So we looked bad for a while."

WATCH l Marner sets up Matthews' 51st goal in Leafs' win over Flyers:

Marner sets up Matthews' 51st goal in Leafs' win over Flyers

6 months ago
Duration 1:15
Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner controlled play to put Toronto up in the third period of their 6-3 win.

The Flyers scratched defenceman Keith Yandle, ending the NHL's Iron Man record for consecutive games played at 989.

Matthews put Toronto ahead 3-2 with 12:19 remaining to pull within four goals of passing Rick Vaive for the club's all-time single-season goals record. Vaive netted 54 in the 1981-82 season.

"Sometimes you have to grind these games out," Matthews said.

Mitchell Marner got Flyers goalie Carter Hart to commit to playing the shot, and then quickly skated around the net and passed in front to Matthews, who fired into the vacated net.

"I just tried to get in a spot where he could give it to me and he made a beautiful pass," said Matthews, who has a two-goal league lead over Edmonton Oiler Leon Draisaitl (the Oilers didn't play Saturday).

Matthews' tally began a frenetic stretch of five goals in the span of about eight minutes. Engvall's short-handed goal gave the Leafs a two-goal lead with 8:17 remaining before Provorov's second of the night on a long slap shot pulled the Flyers within 4-3 with 7:37 left. Rielly all but iced the game with a goal from a sharp angle with 6:13 to play.

"We bent and we broke a little bit there in the third period," Flyers interim coach Mike Yeo said. "We made more mistakes in the third period than they did. They have a lot of skill and they capitalized."

The Maple Leafs opened a four-game trip by improving to 19-12-3 away from Toronto.

Streak snapped

Yandle, 35, started his streak on March 26, 2009, with Phoenix. He passed retired centre Doug Jarvis for the mark of 965 games on Jan. 25 against the Islanders. Yandle was a healthy scratch.

"We're at the point in the season where as an organization it's important we get some young players in," Yeo said before the game. "We have to have an eye on the future and what's coming down the road. We have to give some new guys an opportunity."

Rookie defenceman Ronnie Attard made his NHL debut for Philadelphia.

Yandle has one goal and 15 assists in 67 games.

"It's kind of been one of those things toward the end of the year when you're signing young guys and getting free agents out of college, they're going to give them a chance to play," Yandle said before the game. "It's tough to have a bad day in the NHL. But getting the news you're not playing is not what you want to hear."

Arizona Coyotes forward Phil Kessel now has the longest active streak at 968 consecutive games.

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