Toronto Maple Leafs Player News: Centers

News: Shore scored a goal and added an assist in a 5-2 win over Detroit on Saturday.
Impact: They were Shore's first points in blue and white. He continues to rotate through the fourth line and that limits any fantasy value he might have.
News: Tavares scored his first goal of the season in Thursday's 7-3 loss to Tampa Bay.
Impact: It was a beautiful tip-in from the Leafs' new captain. Tavares' goal scoring has gotten off to a slow start -- it's Game 5. But now that he's on the board, you can expect the goals and points to come in bunches. Tavares now has four points in five games.
News: Matthews scored a goal and added an assist in Thursday's 7-3 loss to the Lightning.
Impact: Both points came in a wild first period that featured seven goals. The assist was actually his first of the season and the goal was his sixth. Matthews has taken his game to a whole new level and as long as he remains healthy, he'll cement himself as the NHL's best sniper. Yes, you read that right. That shot is the league's best, hands down.
News: Toronto placed Kossila (undisclosed) on waivers Tuesday, Chris Johnston of the NHL Network reports.
Impact: Kossila has been recovering from an undisclosed injury he sustained during the Maple Leafs' second preseason contest, which is the only reason he's remained on the big club's roster this long. As long as he goes unclaimed, the 26-year-old will be assigned to AHL Toronto.
News: Spezza recorded an assist and three shots on goal in Monday's 3-2 loss to the Blues.
Impact: Spezza has appeared in only two games this season, and he skated only 8:41 in this contest. The limited role will make it difficult for the Toronto native to match the 27 points he had last season with the Stars. He's safe to avoid from a fantasy perspective.
News: Gauthier scored a goal on three shots in Monday's 3-2 loss to the Blues.
Impact: Gauthier has scored twice this season, just one shy of the mark he had in 70 contests last season. The Quebec seems to have a firmer grasp on his fourth-line duties, but he still hasn't topped 11 minutes in a game yet. He's fired six shots on goal in four games despite the limited ice time.
News: Spezza will be back in the lineup Monday after sitting out two of the Leafs' first three games.
Impact: So far, coach Mike Babcock has been alternating Spezza and Nick Shore as the fourth-line pivot. Neither man is standing out against the other, but neither is causing a problem, either. Spezza's fantasy value is long in the past at this point and that's made worse with part-time play.
News: Shore has no shots and one minor penalty in two games with the Leafs.
Impact: It looks like coach Mike Babcock will be rotating Shore and Jason Spezza on the fourth line, and both will get limited ice time. Shore will likely help in PK situations, but won't be valuable in the fantasy arena.
News: Matthews scored twice in a 6-5 shootout loss to Montreal on Saturday night.
Impact: The big center already has five goals in three games. And a three-game goal streak on the go, too. Matthews has the best snot in the NHL and his release is unbelievably quick and deceptive. He could flirt with 60 goals if he can stay healthy. You know what to do.
News: Kerfoot scored a goal and added two power-play assists in Saturday's 6-5 shootout loss to Montreal.
Impact: We knew Leafs' fans would be in for a treat with this talented pivot and he showed that Saturday night. These points were Kerfoot's first in blue and white. His career mark is 43 set in 2017-18. Given the Leafs' overall speed and talent, Kerfoot could exceed those numbers. And help you off the wire.
News: Tavares notched two assists, one on the power play, in Friday's 4-1 win over the Blue Jackets.
Impact: He also chipped in two shots and a plus-1 rating. Tavares and Mitch Marner already look to be in midseason form as one of the most dangerous duos in the NHL, and the 29-year-old center has three quick helpers -- two with the man advantage -- through the first two games of the year.
News: Tavares registered a power-play assist Wednesday in a 5-3 season-opening home win over the Senators.
Impact: Tavares simply jarred the puck out of traffic, with Mitch Marner executing an amazing no-look pass to Auston Matthews to widen the lead to 4-2 in the second period. When it comes to high-profile players like Tavares, a one-point outing usually isn't enough to meet value in DFS formats, but he's exceeded a point-per-game average for two years running and remains one of the very best at the center spot.
News: Moore scored a goal on three shots and was a plus-2 in Toronto's 5-3 win over Ottawa in Wednesday's season opener.
Impact: Moore buried a rebound in front of the Ottawa net to give Toronto a 2-1 lead less than five minutes into the second period. The 24-year-old collected two goals and five assists in 25 games last season, his first in the NHL.
News: Gauthier scored on his only shot Wednesday in Toronto's season-opening 5-3 win over the Senators.
Impact: Skating on Toronto's fourth line in the season opener, Gauthier knocked home a loose puck in front of the net to get the Maple Leafs on the board early in the second period. It's an encouraging start for the 24-year-old, who scored only three goals in 70 games in 2018-19.
News: Matthews scored a pair of goals and led all players with eight shots in Toronto's 5-3 win over Ottawa on Wednesday.
Impact: Matthews scored consecutive goals just under seven minutes apart in the second period, the second tally coming on the power play. It was an explosive start to the regular season for the 22-year-old, who endured a turbulent end to training camp after an alleged off-ice incident from May became publicly known just over a week ago. A healthy Matthews could very well surpass the 37 goals and 73 points he posted a year ago.
News: The Maple Leafs placed Kossila (undisclosed) on non-roster injured reserve Monday.
Impact: Kossila left a preseason game Sept. 18 as a precautionary measure, and it appears that mystery injury has developed into a real issue. The 26-year-old won't count on the team's 23-man roster, and he'll be eligible to return Oct. 7 for a matchup against the Blues. Once he's healthy, however, Kossila will likely head to AHL Toronto.
News: Matthews, who is facing disorderly conduct charges in Arizona following an alleged incident in May, failed to disclose the incident to the Maple Leafs, reports the Toronto Star. The team found out about it on Twitter.
Impact: "We obviously are disappointed," said general manager Kyle Dubas on Wednesday night. "Like I said, it's been a distraction, to the team and to everyone involved." Dubas was obviously upset, but credited Matthews for his sincerity in owning up to the incident. Matthews, who has been tearing up the preseason, admitted before Wednesday's game that not informing anyone on the team "was an error in judgement on my part." It seemed to affect Matthews on the ice for the first couple periods of the team's win over Montreal on Wednesday. His play was tight. The distraction will pass, but the situation is serious. And it has raised questions about his leadership.
News: Matthews is facing disorderly conduct charges in Scottsdale, Arizona after an incident in May, Kevin McGran of The Toronto Star reports.
Impact: The complaint states Matthews and a group of friends allegedly attempted to enter a female security guard's vehicle around 2:00 a.m. on May 26. It also alleges that Matthews was intoxicated. According to Bob McKenzie of TSN, the Leafs released a statement saying Matthews and the team are cooperating with the investigation but won't comment at this time.
News: Gauthier, who has been under pressure since the signing of Jason Spezza, has made a strong case to keep his fourth-line job, maybe even at center, reports The Athletic.
Impact: Gauthier looked to have lost his job with the offseason signing of pivot Jason Spezza, who was ostensibly brought in to center the fourth line, win faceoffs and perhaps contribute on the second power-play unit. But Gauthier has made his big-bodied presence felt and shown that offseason skating work has improved his game. This could force Spezza to the wing. Gauthier doesn't have much fantasy value, but could contribute on the ice to kill penalties.
News: Kossila departed Wednesday's preseason game against the Senators as a precaution.
Impact: Kossila produced 35 points with AHL San Diego last season and had a brief foray in the NHL with the Ducks, notching one point in eight contests. He signed a two-year, two-way contract with the Maple Leafs this offseason and is aiming to make the Opening Night roster with Toronto.
News: Controversy about Spezza's future is swirling in Toronto following Coach Mike Babcock's comments about the center's interest level after Tuesday's exhibition loss to Ottawa, reports
Impact: Spezza inked a league-minimum one-year deal to play pivot on the team's fourth line. But he's neither fast nor rugged, the only two attributes typically carried by players on the bottom line. "He's trying to figure out if he's interested and we're doing the same," said Babcock. It's now the second time the tough-nosed coach has raised the same idea. We don't know if it's to take pressure off the younger players at the start of camp or if it's something else. Spezza signed thinking he'd perhaps still be able to contribute on the power play, but that's not a guarantee given the firepower in blue and white. It's probably best to leave this guy on the wire for now, as he'd likely be released or traded to another team before being sent to the AHL at this point in his storied career.
News: Tavares (oblique) is expected to be a full participant at Toronto's training camp, which begins Thursday, Mark Zwolinski of The Toronto Star reports.
Impact: Tavares suffered an oblique strain while training for the IIHF World Championship in May, but that injury was never expected to impact his availability for training camp. The 28-year-old logged his best season yet as a pro in 2018-19, setting career highs in goals (47) and points (88) while playing all 82 games, and will be an elite fantasy option in 2019-20.
News: Matthews will get a bit more ice time in 2019-2020, reports Matt Larkin of The Hockey News.
Impact: "[Matthews] should be right around the 19-minute mark," said Leafs coach Mike Babcock of his young star. "I think that's where [Auston's] the best, for sure ... he's earned the right over time as he's gotten better and better to earn more and more." Matthews averaged 18:33 of ice time in 68 games last season and that increased to 19:47 in seven playoff games. The 19-minute average means some nights will be 18 while others will be 20. Even one more shift a game on average means a few more solid offensive chances. And that may get him close to his first 50-goal season...if he can stay healthy.
News: Kossila signed a two-year, two-way contract with Toronto on Wednesday.
Impact: While Kossila will certainly be given a chance to secure a spot on the 23-man roster during training camp, it seems like a longshot due to the team also adding fellow centers Alex Kerfoot, Jason Spezza and Nick Shore during the offseason. The 26-year-old Kossila's ability to play wing could help him make a case, but more likely than not, he will start the year in the minors with the Marlies.
News: Gaudet signed a one-year, two-way contract with the Maple Leafs on Wednesday.
Impact: Gaudet spent the entirety of the 2018-19 campaign with AHL Milwaukee, notching eight goals and 25 points in 50 games. The 26-year-old forward will likely stick with Toronto's minor-league affiliate for most, if not all of the upcoming season, so there's no reason for fantasy owners to keep tabs on him.