NHL sources outside of Toronto have confirmed to the Toronto Sun that Auston Matthews, the alternate Captain of the Toronto Maple Leafs has tested positive for COVID-19.
Matthews is in the first year of a $58 million deal with the Toronto Maple Leafs, a contract that will last the next five years. Matthews had scored 47 goals prior to the regular season being called off.
He is one of the highest profile athletes in North America to test positive for COVID-19, alongside the Dallas Cowboys' Ezekiel Elliott, former NBA star Patrick Ewing and Denver Nuggets coach Mike Malone.
The sources says that the 22-year-old hockey player is in self-isolation at his home in Arizona. He is hoping that he will be healthy enough by July 10 so that he may be eligible to return across the border to Toronto to join the Leafs training camp.
Frederik Andersen, the Maple Leafs goalie, has been staying with Matthew's in his home in Scotsdale, Arizona for much of the break in the NHL season. Sources say he was tested for COVID-19 as well however he did not test positive and has since stopped staying at Matthew's home.
Matthew's team has made no public comment yet themselves regarding Matthew's status with COVID-19, saying that they need more time to get some "clarity" on the matter privately before making a formal statement to the public. “There’s no blueprint for this,” said one of the sources. “This is not an ankle injury.”
Judd Moldaver, Matthew's agent has yet to make any statement on his behalf.
Arizona has had a spike recently in COVID-19 cases and sources say there are also a number of Arizona Coyotes have also contracted the virus. Matthews was training alongside many Arizona Coyotes around the same time. Several other NHL players have also contracted COVID-19 over the past couple of months although the league has not made their identities public.
The Tampa Bay Lightning also just announced that they are closing their practice facilities and the Philadelphia Phillies have also confirmed an outbreak of COVID-19 infections at their training facility in Florida.