Keefe is already sick of questions about Leafs' past playoff failures

Apr 18 2023, 7:13 pm

There are probably few jobs in the sporting world with more pressure than the head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Not only does it come with managing the ins and outs on the ice of arguably the world’s most popular hockey team, but it also comes with dealing with a notoriously tough media market.

The Leafs, of course, have failed to win the Stanley Cup since 1967, while failing to make it out of the postseason since back in 2004. The Leafs are on the 40th head coach in their history, their sixth since winning a playoff series, and their 23rd different coach since the last time they won a championship.

It’s a revolving door that usually only lasts a few seasons at a time, with even the most talented and lauded head coaches often failing to squeeze playoff success out of a team that is synonymous with heartbreak.

Toronto has fallen in each of the last eight playoff series they’ve played, dating back to 2004. Tonight, they’re set to host a first-round rematch against the Tampa Bay Lightning, who they fell to in seven games in the opening round last year.

So when a reporter asked current Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe a question on Monday about, well, that pressure and the “noise” surrounding the team, he wasn’t exactly the biggest fan of it.

“There’s a lot of noise in this city, this time of year… you think about from us, the media, the fans, a lot of the noise is, [the Leafs] have got to do it this year. They’ve got to not only get out of the first round, that’s not enough.”

“Last question,” a member of the Leafs PR staff added.

“We should’ve ended this a question ago. See you guys. Have a good day,” Keefe said, before walking off and ending his media availability.

Puck drop for tonight’s game is set for 7:30 pm ET, and it will be nationally broadcast on both CBC and Sportsnet.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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