The Toronto Maple Leafs are coming off an emotional come from behind win against the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday night, but the game came with a heavy price tag. Auston Matthews was injured in the game, and the team announced this morning that he will be out for at least four weeks. Matthews suffered a shoulder injury, and has been moved to injured reserve.
It’s not the first time the Maple Leafs’ young star has dealt with an injury, as he experienced a similar shoulder problem last season. That injury was to his other side, but he’ll at least know what kind of work he needs to put in to get back to full strength. He will not undergo surgery, but the Maple Leafs are sure to take their time with getting him back on the ice as the club has their eyes set on the ultimate prize this season. Risking Matthews’ health by rushing him back at this point in the season is the last thing their sports science team will allow, meaning it could very well be more than four weeks depending on how the healing process goes.
Matthews was off to an incredible start for Toronto, who are tied for first place in the entire NHL with an 8-3 record. Defeating the Jets consecutive games has put them ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning, Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins in the Atlantic Division, but Matthews’ injury will certainly test their resolve. John Tavares will likely be asked to carry even more offensive responsibility, while Nazem Kadri has been reunited with Mitch Marner to see if they can find some of the chemistry they experienced last season.