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Sheldon Keefe Draws Interest from Devils After Maple Leafs Firing

It didn’t take long for ex-Toronto Maple Leafs, head coach Sheldon Keefe to gain interest from another team. Where will he land this season?

Sheldon Keefe might not be unemployed for long following his dismissal as head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs. According to Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic, the New Jersey Devils are among the teams interested in hiring Keefe. This interest emerged the same day Toronto GM Brad Treliving announced Keefe’s departure, seeking a new voice for the team.

The Devils recently had Travis Green as their interim coach after firing Lindy Ruff, but Green has since been named the head coach of the Ottawa Senators. Ruff, meanwhile, was hired as the head coach of the Buffalo Sabres for a second tenure. TSN’s Darren Dreger reported that New Jersey is also considering other candidates, including former Edmonton Oilers head coach Jay Woodcroft.

Keefe, who the Maple Leafs extended for two more years back in August, is the second consecutive coach fired by the organization with multiple years left on their contract following Mike Babcock’s mid-contract dismissal.

In a video message posted on social media, Keefe thanked Maple Leafs fans. He mentioned his plans to spend time with his family before determining his next steps. “I don’t know what comes next, but I know I’ll be ready for it,” he stated. “In the meantime, I’ll enjoy giving my family the time they deserve.”

Related: Maple Leafs Coaching Change: Why a Cynic Should Doubt This New Direction

Fans Might Have Pegged Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment Incorrectly

Many fans believe that Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, the corporation that owns the Maple Leafs, cares little if the Maple Leafs win or lose. The belief is they are a business that will rake in millions of dollars of profits regardless.

However, I want to remind them that the Maple Leafs are paying Sheldon Keefe at least $2 million yearly for the next two years, not to coach. Before that, they paid Mike Babcock $5 million a year not to coach. Does that sound like something a team that doesn’t care about success would do?

On that note, doesn’t Keefe look heartbroken over the fact he was fired in his goodbye video?

If it were me, I would be crying all the way to the bank and trying to figure out what I would do with my new spare time and millions of dollars in my pocket. On top of that, Keefe has to be confident that when he is ready to return to work, there will be numerous teams vying for his services. 

Could it be with the Devils? We might soon see.

Related: What Makes Craig Berube’s Formula a Winner in Toronto

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. afp1961

    May 18, 2024 at 3:21 pm

    He has two more years of full salary coming to him. If he wishes to step back and decompress as he hinted during his social media post he has that right. I say he shold jump right back in as getting stale by taking a year off ensures no promises of a return. He will never be in higher demand than he is right now. After apprenticing with the elafs and learning the job on the fly he can handle most ther environments. NJD is a perfect team for him. Loads of good young talent and they play 3rd fiddle in the greater NY market, so the spotlight will be elsewhere.

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