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Former Toronto Maple Leafs Head Coach Finds New Job

Head Coach Sheldon Keefe has found a new full-time gig in the NHL with the New Jersey Devils. The former Leaf bench boss had always done a decent job navigating the drama that is the Leaf Land. However, it is on to new pastures in New Jersey. Keefe did a great job in Toronto of developing the young players along their career. Look for him to continue to that going forward with the Devils group of players like Dawson Mercer, Jack and Luke Hughes.

Sheldon Keefe In As Head Coach of Devils

Okay, the Leafs couldn’t get passed the first round. Except that once they did. Yeah, that once they did…since 2004…was under his guidance. Moreover, in his time in Toronto, he compiled a 212-97-40 record, good for a .665 Win%. And, they never missed the playoffs, where he coached another 37 NHL Stanley Cup Playoff matches. With a talented core of Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, William Nylander, and John Tavares the sky really is the limit. Toronto has built a roster with talented players and it is not something to be wasted away. Their goal is to win and the belief is there, but now it is time to execute. The team just needs a push in the right direction. There is no denying this team is good, but they can be better. 

You’d think the Devils shouldn’t have those type of issues. This is another young group and once they get into the playoffs they shouldn’t succumb to the type of issues Toronto seemed to have. Also, from 2023-24, both teams were similar in that they had goaltending issues. Therefore, Keefe will be better prepared this time around.

What’s Next For Keefe in New Jersey

This is an attractive team to want to coach and have lots of young talent to develop as he did through his time in Toronto. On Toronto, all good things come to an end. There was much joy in Leafs Nation just a few weeks ago. This year they made the first round, game seven, after extending a 3-1 hole to the Boston Bruins. However, they followed that up by getting bounced out of the second round by the Florida Panthers in 2022-23. That has now led to the dismissal of Keefe and Dubas the year before. Keefe leaves the bench after five seasons. Despite being a great regular-season team, Toronto has had little success in the postseason. Keefe will want to change those fortunes and bring his new energy and create post-season success to the Garden State. 

Main Photo Credit: Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports


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