Auston Matthews: 4 goals in NHL debut!— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 13, 2016
Sidney Crosby has never scored 4 goals in a game
Auston Matthews: 4 goals in NHL debut— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 13, 2016
Sam Bennett (Flames) had the only 4-goal game in the NHL last season
With a goal just over a minute into the second period, Matthews became only the fifth player to notch a hat trick in his NHL debut, and he did it in the shortest time ever. The Scottsdale, Ariz., native, who turned 19 last month, arguably made his most impressive play on Goal No. 2, which came with just under six minutes left in the first period.
By that point, Matthews had become the first No. 1 overall pick to score twice in his debut since the Capitals’ Alex Ovechkin in 2005. And he did it all with his parents rejoicing in the stands at Canadian Tire Centre.
Six years ago, Matthews chose to focus on hockey over baseball, which was clearly a smart decision. He was two days too young for the 2015 NHL draft, so he spent a season playing professionally in Switzerland before Toronto made him this year’s top pick.
The Maple Leafs last won the Stanley Cup in 1967 and have the NHL’s longest championship drought, not that their fans have had any reason to even consider a championship run for many years. The team has made just one playoff appearance since 2006 and hasn’t made it past the first round since 2004.
In yet another example of how Leafs fans apparently can’t have nice things, Matthews’s historic performance came in what turned out to be a losing effort by his team. Ottawa scored tho only goal of the third period to send the game to overtime and then won it, 5-4.
You have to admit, it's very Leafs to have the greatest night in the last 20 years of the franchise and still lose.— Conor McKenna (@mckennaconor) October 13, 2016