Andersen Answered the Call During 3rd Period Scuffle
This didn’t exactly rank with other great Leafs goalie grapples, such as Felix Potvin-Ron Hextall or Jonathan Bernier-Ryan Miller.
But if Frederik Andersen’s improved play the past four games hasn’t already won over many Leafs fans, he gained a few more Saturday, coming down the ice after Miller was third man in a fight between Toronto teammate Matt Martin and Troy Stecher, in the third-period brawl with Vancouver. Andersen, 6-foot-4, 230 pounds, reached into the pile to grab Miller and any Canuck nearby, though no one-on-one bout with the netminders ensued.
“I wouldn’t really say this was a fight,” said Andersen, who has never been in an NHL scrap and kept his mask on. “Miller got involved, so I had to help out.”
Both goalies were ejected.
Naturally, Andersen’s actions were heartily endorsed in the Leafs’ room after the 6-3 win.
“I guess he wanted to jump into the action,” laughed Morgan Rielly. “Their goalie came out first and he was answering the call.”
“Impressive,” said Martin.
Potvin’s lengthy exchange with Flyers’ Ron Hextall in 1996-97 is considered the most lively video involving a Leafs goalie, happening right in the Spectrum. Mark LaForest got marks for bravery a few years earlier, challenging the bigger, more experienced fighter Sean Burke in a game against the Devils.
Miller, despite having a few inches on Bernier, got all he could handle in the 2013 Sabres-Leafs exhibition game that was part of the David Clarkson suspension after John Scott came after Phil Kessel. On Saturday, it was Andersen with a height edge on Miller.
“I think the fans maybe loved it,” Leafs’ Leo Komarov said. “It was good for them.”