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

Sheldon Keefe addressed the media after the Maple Leafs’ 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins in Game 2 of the ECQF playoff series.

On the team fighting through a couple of deficits and a called-back goal to win the game:

I loved our resolve tonight. The goal at the end of the first period gave them life and momentum going into the second. The game, in the back of your mind, had the potential to be similar to the one the other night. We didn’t let that happen.

There was the Bertuzzi goal coming back, and was the Jarnkrok goal in or not in? Some things were kind of piling up that weren’t really going our way. The guys stayed with it.

Great effort on the road tonight. Really good team win.

On Ilya Samsonov’s performance:

It was great. Some really huge saves at key times. One at the start of the third period stands out, and one to start the second. He is important.

I thought we played another really strong game defensively tonight. It is never going to be perfect. Their team does a lot of good things that are going to stress your team defensively. He had to be there for sure.

He is a big part of this one today. It is a great team effort. We had some great individual efforts, but it was a really good team effort.

On the biggest positives shown by the Matthews line:

How they competed and worked. Auston has a goal and two assists. He was all over the stat sheet tonight. In so many regards, he is affecting the game positively for us.

To me, with the way he worked and the way he competed, he was hard and physical. He was winning puck battles all over the ice. I would say the same thing about Bert and Domi.

Huge goal by Max. Great pass to find Auston in the manner that he did. The way those guys connected there is big-time stuff, and the finish was really great.

I loved that line. I loved a lot about our game tonight all the way through the lineup.

This is a night where Mitch Marner was all over the game, too. He was making plays offensively for us, too, at different times. Great defensive plays. He is playing almost every shift against Pastrnak and doing a really good job helping us there and on the penalty kill.

The Holmberg line gave us great shifts. The Kampf line was good again. I really liked our effort tonight.

On how the team can keep the momentum rolling on Wednesday:

It is a matter of recognizing this is how it is going to be. It is going to be tough. These are two really good teams.

We believe in our group. We know we have a good team. We know what we are up against. They were one win away from finishing second overall in the league. A few weeks ago, we thought they were going to make a push for the President’s Trophy.

This is a really good team, and we have a ton of respect for them. They demand a lot of us. I thought our guys were right there with them again tonight. We are going to have to stand in there and keep pushing on home ice.

On whether this is the most trust he’s ever had in his fourth line as coach of the team:

I am not going to reflect back or spend much time thinking about that, but I like the line. The line has been very good. They have a really clear identity.

Kampf and Dewar can really be trusted defensively. They give you everything they have. Reavo has done his job wonderfully for quite some time. I thought he was really good tonight again. He was all around the net offensively and on the forecheck. He was also really good on the wall in the defensive zone.

Those are all the things you need from your fourth line, especially right now when we have two forwards out of our lineup. It takes a hit to our depth. We need to be able to get shifts from those guys; otherwise, it is going to be way too much on our top people. I need to put those guys into situations, and we need them to pull through, whether it is them or Holmberg’s line.

Jarnkrok has given them a lot of help defensively, but I think Holmberg and Robby have done a really good job, too. That is really important right now when we are playing without guys, especially. It is important all of the time, but with the guys we are playing without, it is important that we get good shifts from those guys.

That was another important thing. They didn’t get on the scoresheet tonight, but it was an important part of the game to be able to trust those guys.