Note: A great article is always worth sharing and we totally agree with this perspective on Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs and the MVP-worthy season he's having. From The Athletic:
What’s easily forgotten about Auston Matthews’ season is how it started.
Matthews had surgery on his left wrist in mid-August. He tried to race back in time for the season opener but wasn’t ready and missed the first three games. When he returned, he wasn’t his usual self.
He scored once in the first six games. It was his slowest start to a season in the NHL.
Since then, well, Matthews has been on an absolute, almost hard-to-fathom tear. Over his past 48 games, Matthews has scored a ridiculous 42 goals. He has 73 points in that stretch. Both lead the NHL.
That’s a 72-goal, 125-point pace, if you’re wondering. (Those 42 goals are 11 better than the next closest player.)
Matthews has grown only hotter and more dominant as the season has rolled along. Not just as a goal scorer but as a destructive two-way force, one who strips pucks from foes like it’s nothing and backchecks with the ferocity of a gritty fourth-line centre.
Matthews shouldn’t just be the front-runner for the Hart Trophy. He has a claim to being the best player in the league, period.
Michael Bunting isn’t wrong about that.
“He’s the best player in the league,” Bunting said without prompting after Matthews scored his 41st, 42nd and 43rd goals of the season in a 6-4 comeback win over Seattle. “That’s just my opinion. Some people might say it’s biased. But in my opinion, he’s the best player by far. He’s so good defensively. He’s so good offensively.
“He’s an all-around package, in my opinion.”
Matthews is on pace for 63 goals and 110 points this season.
-- credit Jonas Siegel Mar 8, 2022
You can still get Matthews at a great price to win this season's Hart Trophy. Here are the current futures odds at SPREADS.CA: