Toronto Maple Leafs: 5 Things We’re Missing Without Hockey Right Now

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 17: Auston Matthews #34 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates past Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals in the third period at Capital One Arena on October 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 17: Auston Matthews #34 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates past Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals in the third period at Capital One Arena on October 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /
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WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 17: Auston Matthews #34 of the Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 17: Auston Matthews #34 of the Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

#1. The Rocket Richard Trophy Race

There was a three-man race for the Rocket Richard Trophy when the NHL season stopped and one of those people in the race was Auston Matthews.

Scoring on 16.2 percent of his shots, Matthews sat at 47 goals when everything halted. Only Alex Ovechkin and David Pasternak had more goals than Matthews, having scored 48 thus far.

As much as the talk around Toronto was about Matthews potentially breaking Rick Vaive’s single-season goal record of 54 goals, winning the Rocket Richard is 10-times more important.

When Vaive broke the record for the Toronto Maple Leafs, he finished 38 goals behind Wayne Gretzky for first place. In the entire NHL, Vaive was fifth in goals scored, so even though he had a great season, he was never in the hunt for the league-lead.

Also, yes you read that right. Gretzky had 92 (WTF!) goals and 212 points in the 1981-82 season. He had 65 more points than the second-best Mike Bossy.

Enough about The Great One, though.

In the modern-NHL, Matthews’ 47-goals in 70 games is already more impressive than Vaive’s 54 in 1982 and winning the Rocket Richard would put him in elite company.

With only a handful of games left in the season, Toronto was actually scheduled to face the Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals once more. Those games would have been must-watch and a ton of fun, as we watched Matthews, Ovechkin and Pasternak battle it out for the goal-scoring title.

Next. Should Matthews Be Captain of Maple Leafs?. dark

If the NHL season returns, hopefully they don’t go straight into playoffs because it would great to see Matthews finish what he started. He deserves a 50-goal season because although he’s an amazing talent, a season like that sometimes only happens once a career.