I’m a strong believer in the theory of where there is smoke there is fire.
Rumours spread during the NHL Playoffs of a forming rift between Leafs Head Coach Mike Babcock and Auston Matthews. While both denied it, Babcock not only met with Matthews after the season, he flew to Matthews’ off-season home to try and smooth the waters.
Their original denial doesn’t hold water when the coach has to go out of his way to sit around and chat.
Now there is talk that Matthews may not be thrilled that John Tavares could get the ‘C’ ahead of the youngster who was clearly in line for being captain before Tavares showed up.
Matthews’ agent, Bobby Orr, now suggests that rumour is ridiculous. Is it?
And with more talk of Matthews having his ego hurt by ice time or a captaincy, is this a young player needing to mature or is this a young player who may not mature.
The Leafs are negotiating a contract with him. They want him around to build a winner, but I’m starting to wonder if there is more than meets the eye on whether Matthews has what it takes to be the front man in hockey’s biggest market.