Ahead of Tuesday’s game against the Golden Knights, Sheldon Keefe discussed the challenge of running six left-handed defensemen during Timothy Liljegren’s absence, the reasons behind the team’s winning streak, and the challenge against Vegas in the rematch.

As a coach, what move have you made over the last month that you would point to as helping your team make the surge?

Keefe: I don’t know. There have been a lot of things that have happened in the last month that you can point to. We have moved the lineup around a little bit.

There has been a change in our team since we came out of that Ottawa game. There is not much else to say other than that. It is a combination of things, perhaps. There is the Morgan incident. There is the nature of how the game went.

With all of those things together, I think it was a chance for our team to really look at themselves. It was a chance for me to light up the team a little bit and get their attention. Through that, injuries, and illnesses, we have moved some things around that have really worked.

We are just seeing a change in the overall feel of our team as we came out of that game. The players have responded really well.

With Timothy Liljegren out, are you going with what you ran in practice yesterday on the blue line?

Keefe: I suspect we will be moving things around a fair bit. We have six left-handed guys. We do have different people that are comfortable on the right side. We know Brodie is comfortable there. Morgan took some shifts on the right side in the last game. We’ve seen McCabe there, of course, and Lagesson.

Benoit has spent the least amount of time there. We gave him some reps there yesterday in practice for that reason — in case we chose to use him there. With the different mix that we have, you will see some different people moving around.

Did you learn anything from the game earlier in the season when you ran six left-handed D?

Keefe: Just that I don’t like it, but as I have said a number of times this year, whether it is injuries or illness, the players just play. You make the best of the situation. That is really it.

Those are not always ideal circumstances, but there are positives to playing on your offside, too. If you are playing a better team game overall, you can enhance those positives. If you are not playing as good of a team game, you can enhance the negatives and the difficulties that come with it.

We will just focus on our overall team game. We have a number of guys who are at least comfortable on the right side, or if not comfortable, at least they have experience with it and can manage it and press on.

Who else besides TJ Brodie is comfortable on their offside?

Keefe: McCabe is getting to a point where he has enough reps there and has had some success with it. He is feeling good with it.

Morgan, over my time here, has been very willing to play the right side. He hasn’t done very much of it, but any time we have asked him to do it or needed somebody to, he is the first one with his hand up wanting to go over there. In fact, even the other night when we put him back with Brodie a couple of times, he said, “I’ll go over and play the right side.” He is good with that.

Generally speaking, the players just want to play and will play wherever you put them. It is just a matter of trying to make it work. Ideally, you always want to have lefty-righty. There are so many instances on the ice where it is helpful. But there are lots of examples of teams and players who are not in those ideal situations, and they make it work just fine. That is where we are at.

Have you had a chance to check in with the medical staff on Joseph Woll?

Keefe: He responded well. I think they just want to make sure that they continue to build up his workload here and take it a day at a time. He won’t back up today, but he was getting a pretty good workout today. We will take it a day at a time from here.

How is Conor Timmins doing?

Keefe: I think he is doing well. He is not cleared for contact yet. He is feeling well, which is why you are seeing him on the ice. He skated a bit when we were away as well.

He is not cleared to be on the ice with other players at this point. With contact and such, I don’t know much about mono, but there is an enlarged spleen that has to settle down. It has settled to the point where he can skate but not enough to the point where he can take contact. That is the next phase for him.

After the update yesterday on Matt Murray, is there an update on John Klingberg at all?

Keefe: No real update. He has been around a little bit. He is moving around and such. Murray is a long way away, and Klingberg is longer away.

Is there anything you can put your finger on about your team’s record against the West this season? You have the best record of any team in the East.

Keefe: I didn’t know that. It is hard to say. We have done well on the road for the most part through the season. The most recent trip helps a great deal. We did well out in California as well.

It is hard to really put a finger on that. I don’t know. Sometimes, you can pull some random things out of 82 games. What does it mean? Probably not a whole lot.

How do you view the challenge tonight against a team you just beat a few days ago coming off of a successful road trip?

Keefe: I think it is a good question. It is something we have to be aware of. It is something you have to be conscious of. You don’t want to have any letup.

The fact that we are playing the same opponent — and an opponent we have a tremendous amount of respect for — should in and of itself be enough for us to not take a step backward.

Any fatigue that we might be facing coming back from the road trip, to me, is nothing in comparison to playing in the back-to-back as we did when we went into Vegas. It was our best effort of the season when it came to the work rate, our enthusiasm, and the feel of our team. It was a back-to-back situation in the middle of a long road trip.

That level of effort and enthusiasm is going to certainly be required tonight. I would fully expect the game to be entirely different than it was when we were out there. I expect it to be hard, tight, and a grind all the way through. But the effort and enthusiasm that we had is certainly going to be required as the baseline. In fact, we probably need a little bit more than that because we are going to have a better group on the Vegas side.