TORONTO - The Toronto Maple Leafs were beaten by three of their former players.
Nathan Dempsey, Steve Sullivan and Bryan Berard all scored against their former team, and Craig Anderson made 43 saves to lead the Chicago Blackhawks to a 4-1 win over the Maple Leafs on Tuesday night.
“It’s sweet,” said Dempsey, who was allowed to leave as a free agent after the 2001-02 season. “Coming back here after two years I wanted this one pretty bad.”
Sullivan added two assists for the Blackhawks, winners of just two of their last 22 road games.
Toronto outshot Chicago 44-15, but Anderson made several spectacular saves throughout. He had 21 saves in third period, and improved his record to 2-12 this season.
“This is the best game I’ve ever played,” Anderson said. “To come in here and take two points from the Toronto Maple Leafs is a dream come true. Toronto and Chicago were my two favorite teams as a kid.”
Toronto backup goalie Trevor Kidd struggled in place of Ed Belfour, who missed the game due to a tight lower back.
Mikael Renberg scored the lone goal for the Maple Leafs, who might have looked past Chicago in anticipation of playing the rival Ottawa Senators on Thursday. Toronto beat Ottawa 5-1 in fight-filled game last Saturday.
Toronto’s Darcy Tucker didn’t think they looked past Chicago.
“We didn’t play that bad. We had a lot of shots,” Tucker said. “They had a lot of guys that use to play here. You knew they were going to play hard. They played a gritty game.”
Tucker, returning after missing almost three weeks with an eye injury after being high-sticked, wore a visor.
Dempsey, who spent parts of four seasons with Toronto, scored on a one-timer with less than a minute left in the first period.
Chicago scored three goals in the second to put the game out of reach.
Sullivan, waived by Toronto early in the 1999-00 season, tipped a shot past Kidd at 7:02, and Mark Bell scored on a 2-on-1 after Sullivan made a nice centering pass. Berard, who left Toronto as a free agent after a serious eye injury, made it 4-0 with a slapshot at 16:34.
Anderson stopped Gary Roberts on a breakaway in the second, and made two spectacular glove saves during Toronto’s two-man advantage in the third.
“The puck looked like a beach ball,” Anderson said. “It’s nice to see. I work so hard.”
Notes: The Blackhawks have the next six days off. ... Sullivan had five points in the last two games, and leads Chicago with 27 assists and 41 points. ... Renberg returned after missing two games with a recurring hamstring injury. ... Toronto center Joe Nieuwendyk is day to day with a ribcage injury.
Watch LIVE: Pittsburgh has a 3-1 series lead and can eliminate Ottawa with a win tonight on home ice.
Video: NHL from NBC Sports
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