Teammates Praise Matthew Knies After Impressive Debut

Aaron Itovitch
April 11, 2023  (10:21)

Matthew Knies wasn't even supposed to play in his first NHL game last night, but when Sam Lafferty left with injury last minute, the 2021 second-rounder got the call.

Matthew Knies Impresses Teammates

While there were some obvious difficulties in the pace jump in the NHL, Knies adapted well, and even threw a few good hits.
He especially gained fans when he pinned the controversial Marc Staal to the boards!
After the game, his teammates praised him. Fellow Arizonan Auston Matthews had a lot to say:
"He fit in really well. You can just see his size & strength out there & he made plays. It's not easy to jump into an NHL game right away especially a game like tonight where they have a lot on the line ... so he looked really good."

"We're trying to do something special here & we believe he can come in and help us. It's just getting him acclimated right away & tonight he didn't look out of place."

Goalie Ilya Samsonov equally joined in on the praise:
"Not easy for him today especially for Florida game. It's not easy to start but he's looking good. He's fighting on the board. I like how he play. He's so nice."

Finally, captain John Tavares tipped his cap to the kid:
"I was really impressed. Not an easy situation to come into. Obviously, you know, helluva 72 hours for him ... you can see the ability, the size & the strength & the puck handling & playmaking ability that he's going to have ..."

Head coach Sheldon Keefe was equally impressed by the kid, who was in the NCAA just five days ago:
"The pace didn't faze him at all. His feet were moving. He made some smart plays with the puck. There were a couple of mistakes out there, but I think some mistakes are good. You can learn thru that & adjust, which I thought he did. He did a nice job."

Clearly Knies has the approval of his teammates and head coach. The only question is, will he be on the roster come Game 1?
As Read on Maple Leafs Daily -
Matthews, Tavares and Samsonov among those who commented on exciting Leafs debut for Matthew Knies' class='lien_marqueur' target='_blank' rel='noopener'>Matthews, Tavares and Samsonov among those who commented on exciting Leafs debut for Matthew Knies
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Teammates Praise Matthew Knies After Impressive Debut

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