Auston Matthews certainly made his presence known around the NHL. A four goal debut solidified his mark in history. Matthews became the first player in the NHL’s 100 year history to score four goals in his debut.
Matthews’ exemplified a bit of everything during his first game in the show. Poise, skill, individual effort, speed, and of course, his wicked shot. As cliché as it sounds, Matthews’ had a great all around game. Everything from his passes to finding an open lane were put on display by the 19 year old rookie.
His first goal was a put back in front of the net. Zach Hyman picked up the puck, from behind a sprawling Craig Anderson, and gave it to an open Matthews who made no mistake.
The seconds was a fantastic individual effort. Making a couple nifty moves while eluding two defensemen, Matthews picked up speed and fired it in the zone. After picking the picket of Erik Karlsson, he sniped short side beating Anderson bottom left.
The hatty came from a feed from defenseman Morgan Reilly. Matthews parked himself on the right side of the net and finished a one timer on a gorgeous feed from Reilly. Cue a Babcock smile.
The fourth demonstrated why he was the number one overall pick. After picking up the puck in the neutral zone, Matthews and linemate William Nylander marched down the ice for a 2 on 1. Matthews dished it to Nylander at the blue line and made a move to open ice in the slot. Nylander threw him a perfect sauce, right on the tape, and directed it high blocker side. 4 goals, 2 periods.
And it wasn’t just Leafs’ fans, that were excited. A couple other celebrities and players around the league had some words of their own. Roberto Luongo, tendy for the Florida Panthers, (@strombone1), Stephen Amell, lead actor for the show Arrow, which debuted last night, (@StephenAmell), and a couple other stars certainly had their fun:
The Auston Matthews era has officially begun. And it began with an emphatic statement. Scoring all four of the Maple Leafs goals, this is surely a sign of good things to come.