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Insider Says Sheldon Keefe Out as Maple Leafs Coach Next Year

There is a lot of chatter about the security of head coach Sheldon Keefe with one insider saying he won’t be with Maple Leafs next season.

As the Toronto Maple Leafs struggle, especially as they attempt to win games holding two-goal leads, there’s a lot of talk about the future of Sheldon Keefe. Likely already on the hot seat as the head coach of the team, there is a ton of chatter about how secure his position is. According to one NHL insider, it’s not secure at all.

Andy Strickland was shocked to learn that Keefe recently said after the Leafs lost to the Colorado Avalanche that the Avs players were not only better than the Leafs players, but beyond the NHL. Keefe was obviously trying to pay them a compliment, but in doing so, essentially called his own team NHL caliber, but the Avs’ best players too good for the league. Keefe said, “When MacKinnon’s line gets out there with Makar and Toews … that’s not the NHL. That’s another league.” It was high of praise for certain, but the terminology might have been a bit ill-advised.

Perhaps more concerning was that Keefe essentially shifted responsibility off of his own players and used the excuse that the other teams was just too good for it to be fair. That’s not exactly what you want to hear from a coach whose team blew a three-goal lead.

Also troubling is the fact that Keefe said at the beginning of the season, and then again during it, “there is going to be less tolerance for defensive mistakes going forward.” Well, the Leafs are rife with defensive problems and the main culprits aren’t being sat. In fact, it appears as though Keefe is selectively choosing who he benches or sends a message to, while letting others have a pass.

The Clock Is Ticking For Sheldon Keefe and Maple Leafs

Strickland took into account all of this when he said, “The clock has begun.” He added, “It started a long time ago probably, but now it’s officially begun. He will not be the head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs when the season begins next year.”

Sheldon Keefe inadvertently took a needless cheap shot at 23 other NHL teams.

Versus the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday, Keefe said the story about the Leafs giving up leads isn’t the right one to be telling. He noted that Toronto should have scored more versus Edmonton and got unlucky with the bounces that didn’t go in. “Before you know it, we have four, five, or six goals on some other nights. The story will be about us giving up leads, but the story to me is more about the ability to execute on these scoring chances, grow a lead, pull away, and take away the will of the other team.”

It’s not clear how Leafs management will see things. Is this about Toronto’s inability to put teams away? Could it be about their lack of holding a lead? Is it just bad luck? Regardless, coaches in the NHL get fired for all three.

The question now is, whether GM Brad Treliving will try to make roster additions before sending Keefe packing, or if things are so far off the rails the Leafs question the thought of going all-in this season and being heavy buyers before the deadline.

Next: 3 Takeaways from Oilers’ Thrilling 4-2 Win Over Leafs

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  1. Pingback: Insider Says Sheldon Keefe Out as Maple Leafs Coach Next Year Its Playoff Hockey Fantasy Hockey News – Its Playoff Hockey

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