Former Toronto Maple Leaf Jason Spezza ‘heartbroken’ over brother’s overdose death

A former player with the Toronto Maple Leafs has spoken out following the death of his younger brother.

In a statement issued Monday, Jason Spezza, 40, said that his younger brother, Matthew Spezza, 37, suffered a fatal overdose over the weekend.

“On behalf of my family, it is with the heaviest of hearts that I share that my younger brother, Matthew, passed away due to an accidental overdose over the weekend,” the former NHL centre said in the statement, shared by the Pittsburgh Penguins where he is now the assistant general manager.

“My family and I are heartbroken and ask for privacy during this difficult time,” it reads.

Matthew, a resident of Mississauga, was a hockey player himself, goaltending in both the OHL and IHL in the 2000s. His last season was with the Flint Generals in 2008/2009.

What appears to be Matthew’s Instagram account features several photographs of him and Jason. One shows the two on an NHL -sponsored ‘mentor’ trip to New York City, according to the caption.

Before joining the Penguins as the assistant general manager, Jason held a position in the Maple Leafs’ front office. At that time, he had spent 19 years in the NHL, predominantly as a centreman, with Ottawa, Dallas, and Toronto.

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