Well, it’s hard to say the Leafs’ opening two games against could have gone much worse.
Outscored 12-4 over their opening two games in Boston and never really looking like they’ve had a chance to win either game by the time the first periods were over, it’s natural to be frustrated with the team’s performance.
But while there was a lot to discussing following the game: Leo Komarov’s injury, the yanking of Frederik Andersen after just four shots, and the low probability of them coming back to win the series, many decided to focus on a pair of words uttered by none other than the Leafs’ #34.
Auston Matthews, asked about the Bergeron line having 20 points: “Shit happens, I guess. That’s hockey.”
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) April 15, 2018
For many, they applauded the candid nature of Matthews’ comments. After all, what else could he be expected to say? The Leafs played great? He’s happy to be losing?
But if you click in the replies to Chris Johnston’s tweet (or any of the other reporters who shared the quote), you’ll find a bunch of “terrible response” and “not captain material” and other variations attacking Matthews’ statement and his character
For some in the media, Matthews’ answer crossed the line.
Oh, Auston Matthews. Not the right thing to say.
— Damien Cox (@DamoSpin) April 15, 2018
Cox fell victim to the infamous twitter ratio, while similarly, this anonymous “bro” account was widely made fun of for
This is the difference between former Maple Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf and future Maple Leafs captain Auston Matthews pic.twitter.com/f35jePAPuA
— Bar South N Celly™ (@BarSouthNCelly) April 15, 2018
Look, I’m not going to police the language of people. If you don’t think an athlete should be swearing, well, you don’t have to tell your children what Matthews said, but beyond that, who really cares? If you think the statement “shit happens” shows that Auston Matthews doesn’t care about the game enough… I don’t know what to tell you.
Using Dion Phaneuf as your role model, the defenceman who managed an entire seven playoff games as Leafs captain? I mean, you can’t exactly blame just Dion for the team’s struggles while he was here, but let’s call a spade a spade- it’s not like he willed the Leafs teams to be uber-competitive or anything, and just about everyone views Phaneuf’s captaincy as one of the worst eras in team history, fair to Phaneuf or not.
Though the Leafs were able to head back to Toronto with a win in their second game, one year ago Matthews found himself in a similar situation. How did he respond? Scoring goals in four straight games, including a now-iconic goal in Game 6 to briefly give the Leafs a 1-0 lead. He’ll be fine, and unless it’s the first time you’ve heard or read someone curse before, let’s find something else to talk about.