Auston Matthews, Justin Bieber discuss self-isolation on Instagram Live

Toronto Maple Leafs centre Auston Matthews celebrates a goal. (Frank Gunn/CP)

Over the past few months, Canadian popstar Justin Bieber and Toronto Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews have developed a friendship that started on the ice and is now growing off of it.

Matthews joined Bieber’s Instagram Live on Sunday to discuss various topics, including self-isolation, some famous Netflix series, facial hair and even some hockey. The Maple Leafs centre admitted that while it’s tough not to be playing because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the current situation is bigger than the game. Bieber echoed his sentiment, adding that he was forced to postpone his shows due to the crisis.

The singer then dug in and asked Matthews who his favourite hockey player was growing up.

“That’s a tough one,” Matthews said. “I have so many but I think the two that kind of stand out the most to me are Shane Doan, because he was playing for the Coyotes and that’s kind of how I first got into hockey … I’ve gotten to know him over the years and he’s such a good person, it’s just really nice to get to know a person like that.

“Then Patrick Kane, even still today he’s probably my favourite player to watch.”

Bieber also wanted to know who, according to Matthews, is the hardest player to defend in the league right now. The 22-year-old had a tough time coming up with one specific player.

“There’s so many good players, it’s kind of hard to just pinpoint one. We’ve played against Buffalo quite a lot, (Jack) Eichel’s really good, he’s really strong,” he said. “A guy like (Connor) McDavid obviously, because he’s really, really fast and does everything, he’s hard to keep up with … so (I’d) probably have to go with him.”

As Bieber asked the question, Tyson Barrie chimed into the conversation taking a small jab at his teammate in the comments.

Matthews is expecting to participate in a video conference with Mitch Marner and Patrick Marleau on Monday.

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