The Toronto Maple Leafs are the best team in the NHL for the first time in 20+ years and no one is talking about it because Auston Matthews is doing some shit no one in a Leaf jersey has done before.
— Dean Blundell (@ItsDeanBlundell) February 21, 2021
Matthews had another pedestrian 4 point night in a 5-2 win over the Canadiens last night, coming off a 4 point heater against Ottawa 48 hours earlier.
Matthews has registered 13 points over his last 5 games, 29 points (18g, 11a) in 18 games.
He’s 2nd in the NHL in stick checks and blocked passes, 3rd in blocked shots and he’s the first player in 15 years to score 18 times in his first 18 games and he says he’s not even thinking about it.
Auston Matthews is a straight-up gangster pic.twitter.com/gInmwoUmBY
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) February 19, 2021
AUSTON MATTHEWS 🚨
300TH NHL GAME! GOAL! pic.twitter.com/dzkh6hLUV9
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) February 21, 2021
Matthews has pts in 16 straight (Leafs record is 18), and his 12 pts this week alone are more than Taylor Hall, Patrik Laine, and almost 700 other NHLers this year.
How much better is Matthews than his Calder Cup-winning rookie year? He is scoring TWICE the pace with the same amount of TOI and he’s doing it from everywhere
#Leafs Auston Matthews points per game by season:
2016-17 – 0.84
2017-18 – 1.02
2018-19 – 1.07
2019-20 – 1.14
2020-21 – 1.61
— CapFriendly Depth Charts (@CF_DepthCharts) February 21, 2021
Unlike Stamkos, who scores the majority of his goals from the hash marks on the left side, Matthews is doing it from everywhere. In close, one-timers from 15 feet on either side, 5-hole on partial breaks, writers from the point, Matthews doesn’t have an office because he’s a fucking wizard. Apart from Crosby and McDavid (who dicked the Flames with 5 pts last night), there isn’t a player in the game with the skill, strength, and intuition that Matthews displays game after game, year after year.
— PengellyInk (@pengellyink) February 21, 2021
As a fan, the only comparison I have to the 2021 Maple Leafs and Auston Matthews is the 80’s Oilers and Wayne Gretzky. Every televised game was appointment watching for 2 reasons:
1. To cheer on our upstart Edmonton Oilers
2. Wayne Gretzky
Wayne was what Matthews and McDavid were last night, every night. The fact that Matthews is now doing this seemingly every time the Leafs play reminds me of how dominant Gretzky WAS and McDavid IS, on a consistent basis.
Matthews currently leads the NHL in Goals (18), 5v5 Goals (11), Goals Per Game (1.00), Game Winning Goals (6), PP Goals (7), and Goals Created Per Game (.69).
What’s insane about the 2021 version of Auston Matthews is that he might be better defensively. He never cheats or gives up on the puck and he’s relentless, in his own end. Do you know how hard it is to find a superstar talent like Matthews who loves playing defense as much as he likes to score??
He’s not just the complete package, he might be the most complete package in the NHL and quite possibly the best all-around player to ever wear a Leaf Jersey.
McDavid makes it look better but Matthews is right there when it comes to being the most dominant player in the NHL and he’s having a season for the ages as proof.
Auston Matthews (172) passed McDavid’s career goal total (171) last night in 71 less games 😬 https://t.co/FBN5m006Ph
— juno (@junotheleafs) February 18, 2021
As a fan base with a masochistic approach to loving their team, I hope some of you Leaf psychos appreciate Auston Matthews today.
Matthews is on the kind of run that people tell their grandkids about, so stop wondering what’s wrong with Nylander and Tavares and appreciate the electric factory that is Auston Matthews. You are watching one of, if not the greatest single-season by any Leaf, ever.
Act like it.
PS: If you’re a loser who likes to point out the Maple Leafs (14-3-2) have only played ‘shitty Canadian teams, STFU. Players from the NHL’s North Division occupy nine of the top ten spots in the NHL’s goal-scoring race, so you can eat a bag of dicks.