Auston Matthews of San Ramon, California, one of the brightest National Hockey League superstars and the favourite to win the 2017 Calder Trophy, scored his very first National Hockey League playoff goal on Monday night. Matthews scored in the first period from Morgan Rielly as the Toronto Maple Leafs upset the Washington Capitals 4-3 in game three of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs. With the win, the Maple Leafs lead the best out of seven series two games to one.
The goal was part of a two point game for Matthews. He also recorded a primary assist on a goal by William Nylander with 40 seconds left in the second period. In fact, prior to Monday, Matthews had never received a playoff point. In the first two games in the series against the Capitals, Matthews was held off the scoresheet.
Matthews was one of three Maple Leafs players to register a multi-point game in game three. The others were Nazem Kadri and Rielly.
It was a strong comeback for Toronto on Monday. Twice the Maple Leafs were two goals down, but bounced back from a 2-0 and 3-1 deficit. The Capitals were the number one seed heading into the 2017 Stanley Cup playoffs, but are once again getting into bad habits. No team in the NHL over the last decade has played so well in the regular season and so poorly in the playoffs than the Capitals.