NHL playoffs | That’s why Matthews makes all this money

The Toronto Maple Leafs chose to pay Auston Matthews $11.6 million this season, and on Monday night, we could see a little bit of why.

Obviously the Leafs couldn’t go home 0-2 in this series, because that wouldn’t have been a good idea, and it was Matthews who made sure that didn’t happen. not.

Dominant, the 26-year-old obtained two assists on his club’s first two goals, then he himself was able to score the winning goal to allow his team to win by a score of 3-2 and go 1-1 in this first round series against the Boston Bruins.

Would it be an exaggeration to claim that this goal is one of the biggest for the Leafs recently? No, not at all, and we can imagine the doubts that would have arisen if the Leafs had had to escape this match. This team, we remind you, is rather fragile, and at 0-2, we could have cited Dave Hilton Jr and affirmed that the damage is “inside” the head. But we’re not there.


Auston Matthews (34) and Tyler Bertuzzi (59)

This winning goal will undoubtedly be seen very often on our screens in the coming hours, because Matthews caught this puck in flight like an NFL receiver, and because his silky hands did the left, in front of poor Linus Ullmark who could do absolutely nothing. After all, you don’t score 69 goals in a single season in this league by chance.

Just before this third goal, it was John Tavares who allowed the Leafs to make it 2-2, a reminder that this cliché of the best who must be the best is not going to disappear immediately. Matthews collected the fourth three-point playoff game of his career.

The Leafs will have to continue to rely on all these great people because it remains complicated in the case of William Nylander, who is suffering an injury and who has not played in the series. This is the same man who collected 10 points in 11 playoff games last season, we remind you.

The Bruins must not panic.

We could question this choice to send Ullmark and not Jeremy Swayman in net, but who are we? That said, we can still bet all our Bill Ranford rookie cards that it will be Swayman’s turn next time.

It remains to be seen how the two clubs will react during this next time, which will also be the third and next match in this series between the two teams, presented Wednesday evening in the city of Drake.

In any case, the Leafs had failed to seize a single lead in six games against the Bruins this season, but Monday night, Matthews’ goal allowed them to get there, finally, in addition to leading them to this big victory.

This is a detail that may not be so trivial in the end.

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