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Fans go crazy after Reaves and Benoit obliterate Pastrnak, Zacha


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Dean Chaudhry
April 24, 2024  (8:34 PM)
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Ryan Reaves warming up before a game
Photo credit: David Banks - USA Today Sports

Simon Benoit and Ryan Reaves landed a pair of massive open ice hits on David Pastrnak and Pavel Zacha in Game 3, sending fans at Scotiabank Arena into a frenzy.

According to Brad Marchand earlier this week, the Toronto Maple Leafs are a different team this year and I think we just saw exactly why in the first period from Game 3 with two thunderous body checks from Reaves and Benoit.
The first period of Boston's 1st visit to Toronto in this series was raucous and physical with the two Atlantic Division teams combining for over 60 hits. Two hits in particular got the crowd on the feet and they happened less than 10 seconds apart.
With 1:49 remaining in the first period, David Pastrnak was traversing the neutral zone as he attempted to enter the offensive zone with a few dekes. After he skated by one player, Simon Benoit absolutely lined him up with a monstrous check that dropped the Czech forward to the ice in a heap.
Then on the very next shift, Reaves lined up Pavel Zacha coming out of the Leafs zone and along the boards. Zacha tried to push the loose puck past Reaves to an incoming teammate and while he was slightly successful, Reaves took care of business.
Once the period finally came to an end, Patrick Maroon had a lengthy and animated chat with Reaves, potentially lining up a fight in the later periods.
If the Leafs continue to play the way they have played over these past 2 games, they'll certainly be giving themselves a great chance to win this series. The increased physical play certainly appears to be working in their favour.
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Fans go crazy after Reaves and Benoit obliterate Pastrnak, Zacha

Does the Leafs' increased physicality give them an edge over Boston in the series?

Yes, they have the momentum17947.7 %
No, the Bruins always find a way19652.3 %
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