Top-rated prospect entering the 2016 NHL Draft, Auston Matthews, is slated to miss another 7-10 days for Zurich in Switzerland’s National League A (NLA), reports NHL.com’s Mike Morreale.
The 18-year-old American is spending his draft year playing for Zurich in one of Europe’s top professional leagues. He’s been outstanding so far, leading the NLA in goals with 10 through 14 games, fewer games than most of the league’s top scorers. He has a total of 16 points and 46 shots through those games and has been a huge presence for Zurich.
Matthews has been out of the lineup since getting injured in an October 23 game against Fribourg-Gotteron, which came just before an extended break where the CHL jumped back into play and the Deutschland Cup took place, a tournament where Matthews had been slated to represent the U.S., but did not play.
CAA Sports Agency, Matthews representatives, have repeatedly called the injury minor and said that he is day-to-day, though he’s been day-to-day for a few weeks.
It seems like there was more to the injury than initially represented, but there’s every reason to make sure that the top-tier talent doesn’t come back too soon, despite wanting to make an impression in his draft year.
Morreale reports that Zurich could have Matthews back as soon as November 27 when they’ll play Lausanne HC.
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.