Trouble in paradise as Matthews, Marner, and Nylander beef on the Maple Leafs bench

Photo credit:Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY
Jon Steitzer
1 month ago
There are a lot of things that went wrong for the Maple Leafs on Saturday night and being downed 3-1 in the game as well as 3-1 in the series probably take precedence for the concerns.
Part of the side show was that tempers boiled over on the bench and it is clear that Auston Matthews and William Nylander weren’t in the mood for Mitch Marner late in the second period.
Not everything that was said can easily be deciphered through lip reading, but it seems very likely that William Nylander directed a “Stop fucking crying bro, this isn’t junior” at Mitch Marner after Matthews unloaded on Mitch earlier in the video. The clip also features a frustrated Marner throwing his gloves in anger which Kelly Hrudey likened to a 8 or 9 year old throwing a tantrum.
Shortly after the incident the Bruins scored their third goal and the period ended. The third period started with Joseph Woll in net and Auston Matthews done for the night. It also didn’t take too long for Mitch Marner to pick up the Leafs only goal of the night on what would normally have been appreciated for his highlight reel moves.
The goal would be too little too late and while it might quell some of the anger in the Leafs locker room, it doesn’t change that they are now down 3-1 in a series where there has been little reason to believe they will go on a three game run. (Call it pessimism but being swept in the four game regular season series and down 3-1 in the playoffs will do that.)
To their credit, both Mitch Marner and William Nylander came out during the media availability to speak about incident.
All of this is fair and valid. I don’t doubt they are madder about it than they are letting on and they’ve been heavily PR coached to not make the situation worse, but I also don’t think that anyone is going home and unfollowing each other on social media or demanding trades either.
The Leafs now have two days to regroup before playing in Boston on Tuesday night. If there is a positive out of this incident it is that none of the Leafs top forwards likely want to be the one who isn’t pushing hard in Game 5. The other unfortunate thing to remember is that this is just one of the problems the Leafs are having to deal with in order to come back in the series.

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