It what has become one of the biggest Canadian sports stories in a while, Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews of San Ramon, California has tested positive for coronavirus. Even though Matthews was born in the state of California, and playing professional hockey in the Canadian province of Ontario, he was living in the state of Arizona at the time of the positive test.
Matthews is currently living in his home in Scottsdale. It has been reported by Steve Simmons of The Toronto Sun that Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen of Herning, Denmark was also living with Matthews, but is no longer. Andersen has also reportedly been tested, but tested negative for the disease.
Arizona all of a sudden has been a coronavirus hot spot. There have been 46, 689 total cases in Arizona with 3246 new cases. Also in Arizona, there have been 1312 total deaths, including 41 fatalities in the Cactus State in the last 24 hours.
Matthews led the National Hockey League with 35 even strength goals in 2019-20. The 2017 Calder Trophy winner was the first overall draft pick in the 2016 National Hockey League Entry Draft. In 70 games this season, Matthews has 47 goals and 33 assists for 80 points. He is a +19 with eight penalty minutes, 25 power play points, five game winning goals, 290 shots on goal, 506 faceoff wins, 60 blocked shots, 40 hits, 78 takeaways, and 48 giveaways.
One could definitely argue that Matthews was enjoying a breakout season at the time of the coronavirus pause. He had career highs in goals, points, even strength goals, power play points, shots on goal, hits, and takeaways. One must realize that Matthews only played 70 games because the NHL season stopped early because of coronavirus.
When the NHL hopes to return, the Maple Leafs will play the Columbus Blue Jackets in the qualifying round for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. In the regular season, the Maple Leafs had a record of 36 wins, 25 regulation losses, and nine losses in extra time for 81 points.