Matthews ratings sixtieth aim of season for Maple Leafs
Auston Matthews grew to turned into the first United States-born participant in NHL history to rating 60 dreams in a season when he scored two for the Toronto Maple Leafs in a 3-0 possess against the Detroit Red Wings at Scotiabank Area in Toronto on Tuesday.
“It modified into somewhat special,” Matthews stated. “Just correct the reception from my teammates, the crowd, all the pieces, it supreme extra or less sends a sit down backpedal your bones however or no longer it’s extra or less laborious to build into phrases.
“It capability loads. Just correct how tight-knit we’re in this locker room. It is cherish a household in there, a brotherhood, so it capability loads supreme to delight in their improve and excellent the response from them, that’s what it is all about.”
The 24-yr-archaic center, who modified into born in San Ramon, California, is the first NHL participant to attain the milestone in a decade. Steven Stamkos scored 60 for the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2011-12.
Matthews scored No. 59 at 15: 48 of the second interval in entrance off a feed from Jason Spezza from late the rating. It modified into Matthews’ first aim in six video games, ending his longest drought of the season.
Video: [email protected]: Matthews backhands in opener for his 59th
He scored No. 60 at 5: 49 of the third interval on the energy play from the excessive slot.
“It is special, or no longer it’s irregular, or no longer it’s rare. I am supreme if reality be told contented for him,” Toronto coach Sheldon Keefe stated. “He works extraordinarily laborious. You know the abilities that he has, however he works extraordinarily laborious at his sport. He works extraordinarily laborious off the ice. He takes his craft very seriously, so as to quiz him on the conclude of his sport reaching these milestones, or no longer it’s accepted.”
With the possess, the Maple Leafs clinched second field within the Atlantic Division and home ice for the Jap Conference First Spherical of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. They are going to face either the Lightning or Boston Bruins.
“It is very sophisticated to enact, obviously,” Stamkos stated Tuesday. “He’s making it see somewhat easy with the capability he can shoot the puck and rating dreams. Doubtlessly took it a cramped bit shut to the wire for his comfort. … Wonderful participant, improbable aim-scorer and a man that’s going to rating unprecedented extra in this league. It appears cherish we would possibly perchance also impartial explore him in every week, so we’ll delight in our work reduce out for us, however obviously a gargantuan milestone for a if reality be told correct participant.”
Matthews handed Rick Vaive for essentially the most dreams in a season in Maple Leafs history when he scored No. 55 in a 4-3 possess against the Dallas Stars on April 7. He then scored No. 56 in extra time of the same sport to space the document for a total lot of dreams in a season by a United States-born participant in NHL history, passing Kevin Stevens (1992-93 with Pittsburgh Penguins) and Jimmy Carson (1987-88 with Los Angeles Kings).
He scored two dreams in his next sport against the Montreal Canadiens on April 9. Matthews did no longer rating within the next three video games, then missed three video games on legend of of an undisclosed injury sooner than returning Saturday in a 3-2 loss to the Florida Panthers. He did no longer rating Sunday against the Washington Capitals.
Matthews is the 21st NHL participant, and third active, to rating no less than 60 dreams in a season. The opposite active avid gamers to enact it are Stamkos and Alex Ovechkin of the Capitals (65 in 2007-08).
Mike Bossy and Wayne Gretzky fragment the NHL document for a total lot of 60-aim seasons with five each and each.
“Dazzling unreal,” Maple Leafs captain John Tavares stated. “Clearly a gargantuan amount of indulge in from the followers and a gargantuan capability to enact it, a great aim. … I know I am being biased, however to me it (the trudge for the Hart Trophy as NHL most treasured participant) will not be any longer shut. Just correct the capability he goes about it, the capability he does it, the consistency, one of the most issues he is done, you continue to shake your head at events. Just correct his skill to keep it up and play his sport and preserve targeted on what he does. He supreme needs to be a incompatibility-maker sport in and sport out.”
NHL.com self sustaining correspondents Dave McCarthy and Corey Lengthy contributed to this file.