Despite his ownership of the puck in most games, Matthews has drawn just eight penalties this season, ninth among Leafs.
Matthews boiled over against Buffalo in the Heritage Classic on Sunday in Hamilton, cross-checking Sabres defenceman Rasmus Dahlin in the neck during an altercation in front of the Buffalo net.
That resulted in a two-game suspension for Matthews levied by the National Hockey League, a penalty that cost Matthews the chance to play against the Dallas Stars on Tuesday and the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday.
“He knows he is going to draw a lot of attention,” Tavares said. “I think it’s something he has dealt with his whole life. He’s arguably the best player in the league right now and is a Hart Trophy candidate and has a great shot to win it.