Auston Matthews wasted no time showing off his talent in the NHL — in his very first game with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Oct. 12, he scored four goals, with the first three coming off his first three shots as a pro player. Get to know the rising star here!
1. He’s surprisingly from Arizona
You wouldn’t expect a warm state like Arizona to produce such a talented hockey player, but Auston Matthews, 19, did indeed grow up in the Grand Canyon State! His love for the game started as he watched the Phoenix Coyotes growing up, and although he was also talented in baseball, his parents quickly realized that hockey was his true passion.
2. He played in Switzerland before the NHL
Even though Auston was an NHL prospect before 2016, he missed the birthdate cutoff for the 2015 NHL draft, and opted to play for the ZSC Lions in Switzerland instead. He finished the season as the team’s second top scorer and won the NLA Rising Star Award.
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) October 13, 2016
3. He was 1st picked in the 2016 NHL draft
Auston was a prospect for a top pick in 2015, so it was no surprise when the Toronto Maple Leafs drafted him as the No. 1 overall when he was finally eligible the next year. He signed a three-year, entry level contract and made his debut with the team in a preseason game on Oct. 2.
4. He’s represented the USA several times
The 19-year-old was on Team USA U18 in 2014 and 2015, and they won the gold both years. He was also named MVP for the 2015 season. Auston also played on the American team during the IIHF World Junior Championship, helping the team win a bronze medal, and on Team North America during the 2016 World Cup.
5. He can speak Spanish
Auston’s mother is originally from Mexico, and although he was born in San Francisco and grew up in Arizona, he can still speak some Spanish. He also has two sisters, Alexandria, three years older, and Breyana, five years younger.
HollywoodLifers, what do you think of Auston Matthews? Were you surprised by his debut in the NHL?