Sheldon Keefe, Toronto Maple Leafs post game
Sheldon Keefe, Toronto Maple Leafs post game

Sheldon Keefe addressed the media after his team’s 3-1 win over the San Jose Sharks that improved the Leafs’ record to 15-5-5.

On Mitch Marner’s points streak coming right down to the wire:

It made it interesting for sure. I am happy for him. Somewhere along the way, you need things to work out for you. He has played a lot of great hockey for us. It was great to see him have that moment.

On Marner passing up one empty-net chance and then missing the net on the next:

Obviously, you start to feel like maybe it is not going to happen, but he stayed with it and got it. It is an important goal. I don’t want to have to defend a one-goal lead to the very end, especially with #65 out there. It is funny how it all played out.

It is an important goal. I am happy he got to have that moment.

On whether he felt the team was looking to set up Marner throughout the game:

No. Maybe on the empty net, but that was it.

On the game remaining 1-1 for so long:

It is a far different hockey game than we have been playing of late. It is sort of a role reversal. We have been sort of playing this game where we have defended really hard, counterpunched, waited for opportunities, and made good on them. Tonight, we had the puck a lot. They got the counter opportunities. They blocked shots, got breakaways, and got in behind us. It was kind of a strange game that way.

Much different feel. We haven’t had that for quite some time, but you have to win ugly ones at home, too. Whether at home or on the road, it is the way it is going to be for now. It is not going to always look the way you want it to, but it is another good and important two points for us.

On Calle Järnkrok’s status after leaving the game injured:

He has a groin injury that is going to require some time. We don’t know the extent of it, but we will have to get an image done. He is going to miss some time.

On the team’s impressive month of November:

I don’t do a whole lot of looking back. Obviously, we are in a good place now and are feeling good as a team. We have a lot of confidence. We feel like we are where we should be.

If we started better, we would be in an even better spot, but maybe if we didn’t start the way we did, maybe we don’t have as good of a November. A lot of things happen over the course of 82 games.

We feel good about this month, but the calendar is going to turn. The calendar turning is something I said when we turned from October to November. The calendar turns, and I think we were just getting through 10 games or so in October. I said we were going to push on from there. We are going to push on from here.

We will take a day off tomorrow followed by a good practice day and then out to Tampa. We will look to keep this going. We have a lot of confidence in our team game. Today, it was a different type of feel and a different type of game, but to win this game and get on the right side of it… As we’ve seen, earlier this season, we were losing these types of games. Today, we got on the right side of it.

It was a great goal for us. A great play by David Kämpf first on a reload. He picked off a pass and countered us going the other way. He gives it to Kerf, and Kerf doesn’t mess around. He just gets it to the net. Pierre is in a good spot to bury it. It is a very important goal for us by those three guys. Sometimes, you need those types of efforts to help you win a game.

On Ilya Samsonov’s first game back:

It is not an easy start there with some of those looks. We had two in the first period where we shot it into shin pads and they went the other way. He stood his ground on it. It is a similar type of play to what he got hurt on. It is not a penalty shot, of course, but it was one-on-one and he looked great. He moved well. He kept them at one in the game.

They had a chance in the third period that was very similar to the one they scored on in the second in the crease. He made the correction. He made a mistake on the first one, but he made the correction at a key moment.

He was great. It was really good to have him back. For him to keep them at one, it gave us a chance to win. That is huge.