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

Sheldon Keefe addressed the media after his team’s 6-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators which dropped the Leafs’ record to 30-12-8.

On where the game got away from the team:

We played a great first period — a really good first period. To me, the story of the game is missed opportunities. We had lots of opportunities to score more than one in the first period and make them pay for it.

We took poorly-timed penalties that are momentum drainers, especially the ones in the first period. The shots were 10-3, we were in full control, and then we had to kill a four-minute penalty against one of the best power plays in the league — which we did, but it changed the momentum of the period when I thought we were really coming and could’ve taken the lead.

It happened similarly in the second period when we kind of got rolling. There were some momentum-killing penalties and just some really sloppy, careless mistakes that ended up in our net.

On whether the injury to Matt Murray relates to the adductor issue from earlier this season:

No. It is not new tonight, but it’s new.

On whether Murray could’ve played if Ilya Samsonov went down hurt in the game:

No. It would’ve been EBUG in that situation, I believe.

On how Murray’s last-minute unavailability affected the team and Samsonov’s game:

It put Sammy in a terrible spot. There is that. A terrible spot. And we didn’t take care of him when he was in there.

I thought we played a great first period. I don’t think it affected the team in that way. I was really happy with our first period. At four-on-four, we fell and lost our structure there, opening up the middle of the ice on the first goal. From there, I thought we were really good. We didn’t give up any chances beyond the four-on-four goal. They didn’t have a scoring chance beyond that, and we had plenty.

There was a lot to like about the first period, but clearly, from the drop of the puck in the second period, we were not the same team.

On Pontus Holmberg’s performance in the top six on a line with William Nylander:

Six minutes in penalties is too much.

On whether the game can be forgotten or if he wants the group to think about it and learn from it over the next few days:

You can’t lose like that on home ice. You can’t have a goalie who has been giving us absolutely everything, comes in a tough spot, and you have a performance like that in front of him in the second and third periods. You can’t have that.

We will forget about it very quickly as we have a practice tomorrow and another game coming. In a couple of weeks’ time, we won’t remember anything about this. But in the moment here, there are some things to learn about, for sure.

If you take Auston out, it changes a lot. I thought we were going well in the first period. The minutes got thrown off quite a bit, too, with the penalties. All of that kind of threw off the period a little bit. When we were playing at five on five, I thought we were excellent.

I was hoping we could build on that. There was a pretty good model there. Ottawa came with a good push to start the period. We didn’t handle it well. We responded well with a big power-play goal against a very good penalty kill, but from there, if you look at the goals, we were in control of the play on virtually every single one of them.

Between turnovers or lack of structure coming into our zone on the one goal Batherson got there, those are things that are in our control that normally we do a better job of.

On whether there were any tactical changes from Ottawa between periods:

No. I just thought they played harder and we didn’t play as well.

On whether a goaltender will be recalled with Murray’s injury:

We will see. The Marlies are away. We will get an idea of where everything is at. It happened pretty quickly right before game time. I haven’t had a whole lot of time to get organized on it. We will have more [info] for you tomorrow.