Maple Leafs send Auston Matthews home from practice

His practice was cut short today.



Despite being heavily shorthanded on Tuesday night against the St. Louis Blues, the Toronto Maple Leafs were able to overcome the absences of a trio of key players to earn a 4-1 victory, thanks in large part to the performance of unsung hero Bobby McMann with his first career hat trick. 

Of course, it was defenseman Morgan Rielly who was serving the first of a five-game suspension owing to his cross check on Saturday night. Additionally, John Tavares and Mitch Marner both were absent due to illness. But has the illness spread throughout the dressing room? 

According to head coach Sheldon Keefe, he cut short forward Auston Matthews' practice session today, but it sounded like it was more for precautionary reasons.

"The All-Star guys kind of grinded through last week," Keefe said. "Does that contribute to why Marner and Nylander are sick? I don't know, but we have to be very mindful of that. Auston wanted to skate today, but I wanted to make sure he kept it short." 

With 42 goals and 21 assists so far in 50 games played, Matthews once again is the favorite to win the Maurice Richard Trophy as the National Hockey League's top goal scorer. 

Right now, it's unclear whether or not Tavares and Marner, as well as William Nylander (who was also under the weather) will be available to play tonight; a decision is expected after tonight's pregame warmups ahead of their matchup against the visiting Philadelphia Flyers. 

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Source: Twitter