Matthews, Nylander practice, could play for Maple Leafs against Canucks


Auston Matthews and William Nylander practiced Saturday and will be game-day decisions to play for the Toronto Maple Leafs against the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; SN, TVAS, NHL.TV), Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said.

“We’ll have to see how they feel after skating today,” Keefe said. “They got through the practice well today and that’s obviously a positive. But we won’t know their official status for the game until we see how they are the remainder of the day and how they wake up tomorrow.”

Matthews missed the Maple Leafs’ 5-2 home loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday with an upper body injury. The forward has scored 53 points (32 goals, 21 assists) and leads the NHL in goals.

Nylander has not played since the Maple Leafs won 5-3 at the Calgary Flames on April 5 after entering NHL COVID-19 protocol. The forward, who has scored 30 points (13 goals, 17 assists) in 39 games, has skated the past two.

“We got back from the road and I met someone who had tested positive for COVID the next day, so I had to isolate for nine days and had nine nights of tests,” Nylander said.

“I was worried about me getting it and giving it to some of the guys, which is something I obviously didn’t want to happen, so over those few days where I was being tested every day I was pretty nervous. Thank God nobody got it. That was the No. 1 thing I was worried about.”

Nylander said he feels good and stayed in shape by riding a stationary bike in his room during quarantine.

Keefe said Jack Campbell, who has lost two straight after starting the season with an NHL-record 11 consecutive victories, will start in goal on Sunday.

The Canucks have not played since March 24 because of a COVID-19 outbreak.

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