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Matthews refuses Coach Babcock's orders to play the PK

New season, same old power struggle in Toronto.

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With the departure of long-time Toronto Maple Leafs forward Nazem Kadri this past offseason, there’s a gaping hole in the team’s penalty killing unit for the 2019-20 season. So, who does Leafs head coach Mike Babcock have in mind for Kadri’s replacement? Well… one thing’s for sure, he likely won’t have a willing participant in superstar Auston Matthews

Check out this quote from Babcock courtesy of TSN’s Kristen Shilton from when Babcock was asked about using Matthews on the PK:


In other words, “I don’t think so. Homey don’t play that.”

 


Pretty bold. Especially when you consider the relationship that Babcock and Matthews have or are reported to have. 

There’s also a chance that Alex Kerfoot, who was actually acquired from the Colorado Avalanche in the Kadri trade, could also get some PK time this season. But, realistically, Leafs fans should get ready to see a LOT of John Tavares on special teams, both the PK and the PP.