Maple Leafs' Auston Matthews reaches 60 goals for 2nd time in his career

Sat, Mar 30, 2024
NHL News (AP)

Maple Leafs' Auston Matthews reaches 60 goals for 2nd time in his career

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Toronto center Auston Matthews became the NHL's first two-time 60-goal scorer in 30 years, scoring with 5:37 left in the Maple Leafs' 3-0 victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday night.

Matthews matched the franchise record he set when he led the NHL in goals two seasons ago. The 26-year-old joins a group of eight NHL players to have multiple 60-goal seasons, and first since Pavel Bure had back-to-back 60-goal campaigns with the Vancouver Canucks in 1992-93 and 1993-94.

Wayne Gretzky and Mike Bossy lead the list with five 60-goal seasons.

Matthews, from Scottsdale, Arizona, became the first U.S.-born player to accomplish the feat.

Matthews did much of the work in setting up the goal by chasing after Buffalo defenseman Bowen Byram, who lost his stick while trying to track a puck dumped into the Sabres end. Matthews' first attempt was stopped by Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen. The Maple Leafs worked the puck back to the point where Connor Timmins' shot was stopped by Luukkonen with Matthews sweeping the loose puck into the open left side to cap the scoring.

Matthews celebrated by going down to one knee and punching the air, before being mobbed by his Maple Leafs teammates at the boards. Though a road game for Toronto, the stands were filled with a large contingent of Maple Leafs fans, who began chanting "MVP! MVP!"

The goal came in the same arena where the Maple Leafs selected Matthews with the No. 1 pick in the 2016 draft.

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