Stars Aligned: McDavid and Matthews Set, and Keep, the Pace

“To have this in Canada like this, with the best goal-scorer and the most electrifying player in the league going at it nine times, this is special,” Button stated, “and there’s a real possibility for Edmonton and Toronto to play in the playoffs.”

Similar to Crosby and Ovechkin, who broke into the league in 2005-06, McDavid and Matthews, the No. 1 draft picks in 2015 and 2016, are giving followers the posh of watching them develop on the identical time.

In the N.H.L.’s scoring race, McDavid is No. 1 and Matthews No. 3. In the objectives race, Matthews is No. 1 and McDavid No. 2.

Injuries, in fact, are the good unknown, and there’s some concern going into the three-game sequence that their competitors could also be placed on maintain on account of a wrist damage that Matthews aggravated in opposition to the Calgary Flames on Wednesday.

Matthews, who missed a recreation earlier this season in opposition to Edmonton with an damage, didn’t observe on Friday and is listed as a game-time choice Saturday. Matthews has been dealing with the damage “virtually all season,” his coach, Sheldon Keefe, stated. Even nonetheless, Matthews contributed two assists within the 2-1 additional time victory over Calgary.

Toronto followers have been ready a very long time for a expertise like Matthews. The final Maple Leaf to steer the league in objectives was Gaye Stewart in 1945-46, and the final Maple Leaf to steer the N.H.L. in scoring was Gordie Drillon in 1937-38.

“He’s picking goalies apart,” William Nylander, a Maple Leafs wing, stated of Matthews. “And he’s doing it consistently.”

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