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Keefe Finds Home In NJ, Is Savard Heading to Toronto?

May 23, 2024, 6:48 PM ET [216 Comments]
Mike Augello
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It did not take long for Sheldon Keefe to find a new home. The former Toronto Maple Leafs bench boss has been hired by the New Jersey Devils to be their head coach. Keefe, who was dismissed after over four years with Toronto, had a new two-year contract extension with the Leafs to fall back on at a reported $3 million salary, but according to Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic, his new four-year deal with the Devils will pay him more and will alleviate any financial burden from Toronto.

The 43-year-old did an excellent job with Toronto, and his quick departure from the unemployment line is proof that he is well respected and that the reality is that his dismissal from the Leafs was a) a product of being there for a long time and b) the roster was constructed in a way that it was not conducive to winning.

The affect this could have on the Leafs is that many on Keefe’s staff who do not get an offer to remain in Toronto with Craig Berube will have a landing spot. There have been no indications on decisions made to this point, but Berube did mention in his press conference on Tuesday that one coach of Keefe’s staff (Mike Van Ryn) did work with him in St. Louis, which might be an indicator that he would be staying.

One move that had been rumored earlier in the week, but now seems almost certain to happen is former NHLer Marc Savard joining the Leafs as an assistant.

Savard was on Ryan Huska’s coaching staff with Calgary, but on Wednesday it was announced that he and the Flames had agreed to ‘mutually parted ways’. Savard served as an assistant to Berube in St. Louis the year after the Blues championship, working primarily on the club’s power play unit, and went on to be head coach of the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires for two seasons before joining the Flames.


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