Maple Leafs question missed cross-check on Matthews

Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe was asked about the cross-check on Auston Matthews, saying that the refs told him he fell on his own. He also added that Matthews doesn't seem too bad after finishing the rest of the game.

The Toronto Maple Leafs let a big opportunity slip by after blowing an early 3-0 lead in their 4-3 loss to the Colorado Avalanche.

With the game tied 3-3 in the third period and the Leafs looking to apply some pressure in the offensive zone, Auston Matthews was spilled into the boards by Avalanche defenceman Josh Manson.

Matthews was down on the ice briefly and was slow to get up as he was cross-checked in the side by Manson. There was no penalty call on the play which did not sit well with head coach Sheldon Keefe.

[brightcove videoID=6344862108112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]

After the game, the Leafs coach was asked what explanation he got from the referees in their decision to not give a penalty.

“The ref told me he didn’t get cross-checked and he fell by himself into the boards,” Keefe said. “Those are my feelings I guess, he did not get cross-checked.”

Keefe was unsure if Matthews was dealing with any discomfort after the game but said that did ask his leading goal scorer if he could continue playing after getting hit and was told he was fine.

[brightcove videoID=6344863771112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]

William Nylander noted the lack of power play opportunities that went Toronto’s way with just one penalty called on Colorado all game.

“It’s a hard non-call there and he gets hurt there too on the play,” Nylander said about the Matthews cross-check.

According to Natural Stat Trick, Matthews is 99th among NHL players with just 11 penalties drawn this season while Brady Tkachuk leads the league with 28 penalties drawn.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.