SPORTS

NHL: 3 stories from Wednesday night

01/01/2015 12:55 EST | Updated 03/02/2015 05:59 EST
The post-Randy Carlyle era began with a thud as the Leafs were dumped by the Washington Capitals. The Calgary Flames couldn't mount another comeback against Detroit, while the Boston Bruins finally won an overtime game.

Here are 3 stories from Wednesday night in the NHL:

Same old Leafs drubbed by Capitals

The Maple Leafs have half a season left to carve a path to the playoffs after a roller-coast first half that resulted in coach Randy Carlyle being fired on Tuesday. In speaking for the first time on Wednesday, Carlyle took his firing in stride.

The post-Carlyle era began with newly appointed interim head coach Peter Horachek behind the bench, and a lacklustre 6-2 loss to the Washington Capitals. When these two teams last met in late November, it was the Leafs who waltzed to a 6-2 victory. On Wednesday, a flurry of turnovers by Toronto led to six Washington goals, including two each by Marcus Johansson and Eric Fehr.

For a change the Leafs outshot their opposition, 33 to 25, but Washington capitalized on an abundance of Leafs mistakes to earn the victory.

Maple Leafs defenceman Roman Polak refused to stop competing, coming back to the game after receiving stitches above his lip after stopping a shot by Washington forward Troy Brouwer with his face. Polak, hurt in the opening period, came back to play a regular shift, and assisted on Trevor Smith's second-period goal that brought the Leafs to within a goal.

The Capitals responded with another score just 42 seconds later and won going away.

Nazem Khadri performed clean-up duty for the Leafs, lifting a Toronto jersey tossed onto the ice by a disgruntled fan as he skated off the ice.

Prior to the game, Canada's world junior hockey gold medallists were honoured, with Robby Fabbri and Max Domi on hand for a ceremonial faceoff.

​Flames can't catch Red Wings

Leading the NHL in third-period comebacks with eight, the Flames couldn't quite come all the way back against the Detroit Red Wings, falling a goal short in a 3-2 decision.

They certainly made it interesting in the dying minutes with the goaltender out when Paul Byron put one in the Wings' net, but the goal was disallowed because of a collision between Curtis Glencross and Detroit's goalie Peter Mrazek.

The Flames took an early lead 2:27 into the opening period when Mason Raymond, in his first game back in the lineup, fired in a wraparound goal.

It was an earlier collision between Flames' goaltender Kari Ramo and teammate Raphael Diaz that sent Ramo to the dressing room with an apparent head injury. He was replaced by Jonas Hiller and did not return.

Three Detroit goals, one in each period, gave the visitors a two-goal lead before Mikael Backlund closed the gap 5:13 into the third period, setting up the wild finish.

Bruins' Bergeron grounds Flyers

A pair of perennial NHL powers, the Bruins and the Penguins, both struggling of late, met in Pittsburgh. The Bruins had lost three in a row, all in overtime, while the Penguins were 2-4-1 in their last seven. The teams battled into overtime where the Bruins won 3-2.

Beau Bennett opened the scoring just 3:37 into the first period, tallying from the right side after a great feed by Evgeni Malkin.

In the second period, Patrice Bergeron gave Boston its first lead with his ninth goal of the season.

- On mobile? Watch goal here 

A Malkin blast tied the game just 15 seconds into the third period, but Bergeron scored in overtime to give the Bruins only their fourth win in their last 13 road games. He tipped in Zdeno Chara's drive and after a lengthy review of whether it was hit by a high stick, it was ruled a goal.

MORE:cbcSports