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Belfour makes 32 stops for surging Leafs

CHICAGO (AP) -- The Toronto Maple Leafs needed less than five
minutes in the first period to put Chicago away.

Toronto's Alyn McCauley, Jyrki Lumme and Tie Domi scored in a
4:55 span early in the first to lead the Leafs past the Blackhawks
3-1 Wednesday night.

Ed Belfour made 32 saves as Toronto won for the sixth time in
its last seven games (6-1-0).

Mark Bell scored 64 seconds into the game for Chicago, which has
won only two of its last 12 (2-8-2).

"It was a little bit of a shaky start, but after that we
settled down and played hard,'' Belfour said. "I was seeing the
puck well and our guys we're letting me see the shots.''

Although Toronto didn't add to its early 3-1 lead, the Leafs
defended it by staying aggressive.

"We've got a veteran team, and that's starting to come through
now,'' Domi said. "When we've got a lead, we don't want sit back.
We want to keep coming at other teams and add to it.''

Chicago's Jocelyn Thibault made 25 saves, but Toronto's early
flurry was enough for the victory.

"We had a bad first period,'' Thibault said. "We had a good
start, but after that they kept coming at us and that was the
game.''

Toronto was 0-for-3 on the power play. Chicago, which has the
NHL's worst power play, was 0-for-4.

Bell opened the scoring early, beating Belfour low on the glove
side with a 40-foot shot from the slot.

Toronto then took control with three goals in under five
minutes.

McCauley tied it at 1 at 2:51 by converting a rebound of Tom
Fitzgerald's shot from the point. Thibault made a pad save on
Fitzgerald, but the rebound popped to McCauley in the slot.

Lumme made it 2-1 five seconds after a Toronto power play
expired. After picking up a loose puck, he circled into the high
slot and beat Thibault with a high shot from 40 feet.

Domi increased Toronto's lead to 3-1, firing a high shot over
Thibault's shoulder from a sharp angle near the right corner.
Thibault stopped Domi's initial shot from right wing, but Domi
lofted in his second attempt.

"That was one of the toughest games for us to play in,''
Chicago coach Brian Sutter said. "Toronto's a club that's not easy
to play against. They're a big strong club and played like it.''

Toronto had several other prime scoring chances in the period,
including when Alexander Mogilny hit the post.

Neither team had many scoring chances in the second period.

Theo Fleury had Chicago's best opportunity to cut the lead in
the third period, but he fired a rebound of Tyler Arnason's shot
over the crossbar.

Game notes
The Blackhawks sent C Igor Korolev and RW Ryan VandenBussche to Norfolk of the AHL. ... Toronto LW Shayne Corson
missed the game with a cracked knuckle, which he hurt in a 5-4 loss
to Edmonton on Tuesday. ... Toronto LW Gary Robert, out all season
following shoulder surgery, has been cleared to play. He could
skate Saturday against Ottawa. ... Toronto RW Tom Fitzgerald earned
his 300th career point by assisting on McCauley's goal. ...
Wednesday game was the only one between the Maple Leafs and
Chicago, both "Original Six'' NHL members. The 2002-2003 season
marks the first time the Blackhawks will not play a game in
Toronto.