Sheldon Keefe addressed the media after the Maple Leafs’ 4-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks that dropped the team’s record to 2-1-0.
On where the game got away from the team:
I thought we were really sloppy with the puck in the first period and then got beat in transition in the second period. That is really it.
On what can be done to address the mistakes his team is making:
Just talk about them. The turnover stuff early on — it’s all just careless with the puck, and it is all of our best players. Really, really careless to start the game. That didn’t give us a chance to take hold of the game like you want to be able to do on home ice.
We weren’t able to take charge of the game, and then you let your opponent hang around. We have seen this movie before when you let them hang around.
You are not getting power plays. You only start to get some momentum once they score their first goal. A couple of penalties against us kind of took away from our momentum.
There were two goals against in transition coming out of the offensive zone. I don’t know if we really had to defend. I don’t know how much time we spent in our own end tonight… not very much at all.
This is a much different story than what we have been through in the previous games. There were not enough goals, obviously, to make up for the mistakes, which is what has been happening.
On whether there is concern about playing from behind so often in the first three games:
On Joseph Woll’s performance:
He was good. The goals he let in were guys in alone on him. We didn’t get in alone on their goalie at all the whole night. They got three goals on us in alone on the goaltender. That is the difference.
On William Nylander’s game:
He was good with the puck. He made a mistake on the transition on the one goal against. He is playing D, and he has to play D and let our guys recover.
Offensively, especially in the second and third periods… Our best guys got going in the second and third periods. None of us were good in the first.
The second period was actually a fairly dominant period for us. We were beaten in transition and gave them free looks. They scored. That is sort of the tale of the game.
On the new-look defense pairings in the third (McCabe with Liljegren and Giordano with Klingberg):
Just mixing it up.
On what needs to be worked through defensively:
We just have to continue to focus on the things that we have been focusing on. The next game we play is not going to be like this one. We had the puck probably 75% of the game tonight. That is not going to happen when we go out on the road. The game is going to be different.
If we focus too much on some of the things that happened tonight, we won’t be ready for the next opponent. We will just keep doing the things we have been doing.
It is going to be a tough road trip for us. Quality opponents. Going down to Florida, we are familiar with what we are up against there. We will just focus on that.