Star centre Auston Matthews will return to the Toronto Maple Leafs’ lineup on Wednesday night against the visiting San Jose Sharks.
Leafs head coach Mike Babcock confirmed the move Wednesday morning. The 21-year-old Matthews hasn’t played since suffering a shoulder injury Oct. 27 against the Winnipeg Jets.
“Matthews is cleared medically, says he’s ready to go (and) feels comfortable to take a big hit, so he’s ready to play,” Babcock said.
Matthews was hurt early in the second period of Toronto’s 3-2 victory over Winnipeg last month when Jets defenceman Jacob Trouba delivered a shoulder-to-shoulder check as the Leafs forward tried to cut in front of the net.
The 2017-18 Calder Trophy winner as the NHL’s top rookie, Matthews had 10 goals and six assists through 11 games before the injury, which kept him out for 14 games.