The Toronto Maple Leafs will face a struggling Arizona Coyotes team at home tonight.
Auston Matthews is the hottest player on the planet right now, but funny enough, his stats aren’t that great when his Toronto Maple Leafs face the Arizona Coyotes.
Matthews’ recent run has been historic. He’s on-pace to have the best season in Leafs history and is in the running to win the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy, Art Ross Trophy, Hart Trophy and Selke Trophy.
Winning one of those awards is an amazing accomplishment but the fact that he’ll realistically be considered for all four this campaign is insane.
With 43 goals in 54 games thus far, Matthews’ last game was one of his best of the season. He finished with a hat-trick against a terrible Seattle Kraken team and will hopefully continue that against his childhood team.
As everyone knows, Matthews grew up watching Arizona Coyotes games nightly and that’s where his love of hockey began.
However, in his career, Matthews has struggled against the Coyotes statistically, despite them never really being that good of a team.
Matthews Has Historically Struggled Against Arizona
Matthews has only played nine games against the Arizona Coyotes in his career and he has four goals and five total points (stats: hockeyreference.com).
Four goals in nine games is pretty good for an average NHLer, but this is Auston Matthews we’re talking about.
His five total points is the lowest point total against any other team in the NHL. I know he hasn’t played the Coyotes as much as a lot of other teams in the league because they’re in the Western Conference, but those five points in nine games are not only his lowest point total but it’s his lowest point-per-game average total as well.
Matthews is averaging a point-per-game (if not more) against almost every other team in the NHL, but whenever he faces the Coyotes, he struggles (comparatively).
Maybe he’s trying too hard to score, or maybe it’s just unfortunate bad-luck, but for whatever reason, Matthews has struggled against Arizona, compared to the rest of the NHL.
The Arizona Coyotes are 17-35-4 and are second-last in the NHL with 38 total points, so it should be a different story for Matthews and the Leafs. However, the last time these two teams faced each other, Arizona miraculously won 2-1, despite outshooting the Coyotes 46-18.
Although Matthews seems to be scoring two-three points every single game this year, don’t be surprised if the Coyotes stop his hot-streak. Hopefully that doesn’t happen, but history would say otherwise.