Sheldon Keefe spoke to the media after his team’s 6-3 loss to the St. Louis Blues that dropped the Leafs’ record to 32-13-3 on the season.
On the Tavares line breaking through with a couple of goals from Nylander:
I had said that they were generating chances and it just seemed like it was a matter of time, particularly for Will. Those shots that he had where he is in behind the D and he is in alone with the goalie — he has had those for a while now, and they haven’t gone for him the way they do. Tonight, they did. That is a good sign for him and us.
On how the Blues broke the Leafs down for six goals against:
They have a lot of skill. They are one of the top teams in the NHL on the rush. We knew that going into the game. It was going to be a challenge for us to defend against that. They got the better of us. We didn’t do a good enough job with it.
They have been doing that pretty consistently to everybody in the league. St. Louis, over the time they won the Stanley Cup, has developed a reputation as a big, heavy, o-zone team, but they have completely transformed how they play this year. A lot of that is through the development of the younger players and all of that kind of stuff.
They are as dangerous as any team there is in the NHL on the rush. They showed that tonight.
On another too-many-men penalty against:
We have had some with different circumstances where things happen bang-bang. This one tonight is not a good one. We had more than enough time to process what was going on on the ice and let the puck go by. We failed to do so.
On Jack Campbell’s performance on a night where he gave up five:
He doesn’t have a chance to be good tonight. I am not saying that he wasn’t good, but you give up five, and it doesn’t look good. There were a lot of gifts tonight in and around the net… tap-ins. Our team didn’t do a good enough job for him tonight.
On the play of the new defense pairings with Muzzin-Liljegren and Sandin-Holl:
I mean, all of our guys have moved around and played with different people throughout the season. I don’t think that had any impact today. It was just how we defended the rush and how we handled plays with speed coming towards our net. We didn’t do nearly a good enough job on that.