Toronto Maple Leafs: What to Expect from Auston Matthews This Season

Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Maple Leafs
TORONTO, ON – FEBRUARY 17: Auston Matthews #34 and the Toronto Maple Leafs  (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /


Whether accurate or not, a constant criticism of the Toronto Maple Leafs is their lack of leadership. It is something that GM Kyle Dubas has gone out and tried to fix repeatedly in Free Agency by bringing in Joe Thornton, Wayne Simmonds, Jason Spezza to name a few.

This expectation likely falls more into the fan appeasement side of the game, but it isn’t too much to expect Matthews to take on a more vocal role in the team. Of course, there is little to no idea what goes on in the locker room of the Maple Leafs (although the new Amazon documentary could reveal new dimensions).

However the fans want to see someone talking on the ice, not necessarily chirping the other team, but geeing up teammates, calling out a lack of effort, generally just more talking. By now we have all seen The Last Dance, we all know how Michael Jordan approached practices let alone games and the fans should expect that from their star player.

If you haven’t watched Iman Shumpert talk about LeBron James’ basketball IQ then click to about 5:50 and listen to how vocal Lebron is on the court. What we need to see from Matthews is more talking and more chat to his teammates.

John Tavares is a leader, Morgan Rielly is a leader, and Matthews is as well but for the fans’ sake, one of them needs to publicly show it. Its vain, its needy but the Leafs fans have bought in to the team and it’s what the fans should expect.

Verdict: Unlikely