Stamkos vs. Matthews: Leafs-Lightning playoff game features unlikely fight combo

Apr 23 2023, 2:06 am

The Toronto Maple Leafs have never been a thing to keep things normal come playoff time.

And it appears that Toronto superstar Auston Matthews is adding to that tradition with his involvement in a tilly on Saturday night’s Game 3 against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

About five minutes into the third period, Matthews found himself getting punched by Tampa’s Steven Stamkos, a rare star-on-star fight.

The scrap came following a collision between Toronto’s Morgan Rielly and Tampa Bay’s Brayden Point that sent the latter to the dressing room, though he did return later in the period.

It was the first fight of Matthews’ NHL career, while Stamkos has seven career scraps, per HockeyFights.

Both players picked up five-minute fighting majors in the ensuing scrum, as did Toronto’s Ryan O’Reilly and Tampa Bay’s Nikita Kucherov. Meanwhile, each of Morgan Rielly, Darren Raddysh, and Kucherov picked up roughing penalties, giving the Leafs a two-minute man advantage, though Toronto was unable to capitalize on the play.

At press time, the Leafs and Lightning were in overtime.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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