The Toronto Maple
Leafs are reportedly just one of two teams, which filed paper work to interview Mike Babcock for their coaching vacancy.
They may also have a name in mind to potentially join Babcock behind the bench.
According to Sportsnet’s Damien Cox, the Leafs are expected to approach Sheldon Keefe for a coaching role with either the Leafs or their American Hockey League affiliate.
Keefe, who coached the Ontario Hockey League’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds to a league-best 54-12-2 this season, has ties to Leafs assistant GM Kyle Dubas.
Dubas hired Keefe to coach the Greyhounds when he was named the team’s GM in 2012.
Toronto fired interim head coach Peter Horachek along with assistants Steve Spott, Chris Dennis and goaltending coach Rick St. Croix
on April 12.
Prior to coaching Keefe appeared in 125 NHL games with the Tampa Bay Lightning scoring 12 goals and 12 assists.
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Todd McLellan and Mike Babcock are the two most coveted coaches available and the Toronto Maple Leafs plan to meet with both regarding their coaching vacancy in the coming days according to Sportsnet’s Damien Cox.
Leafs’ President Brendan Shanahan is expected to travel to the Czech Republic this week where he will meet with McLellan who is currently coaching Team Canada at the Worlds.
fired interim head coach Peter Horachek on April 12 after the Leafs finished 9-28-5 under his watch.
Babcock is heading overseas to watch Red Wings prospect Dylan Larkin who is playing for the Americans.
Elliotte Friedman reported on Saturday night that McLellan is the Edmonton Oilers’ top choice for their coaching vacancy.
According to a report out of Philadelphia on Sunday, Babcock is the Flyers’ top target to replace Craig Berube.
Detroit and San Jose would each get a
third round pick if Babcock or McLellan sign elsewhere.
You can cross the Pittsburgh Penguins off the list of teams interested in Mike Babcock’s coaching services.
There was some thought that with Babcock’s ties to a number of Penguins, including Sidney Crosby; through his Olympic coaching experience that Pittsburgh could be a fit.
Penguins CEO David Moorehouse said last month that he has
“never given any consideration” to replacing head coach Mike Johnston or GM Jim Rutherford.
echoed that sentiment.
“We are committed to our present coaching staff,” Rutherford said.
Buffalo, Philadelphia, Toronto, and Edmonton are amongst the teams
reportedly interested in Babcock.
After a six game absence the Detroit Red Wings expect to have forward Justin Abdelkader in the lineup for Game 3 on Tuesday night.
Abdelkader has missed the first two games of the series with an
injured right hand.
“We’ll be fortunate we’ll get Abby back next game, so we’ll be able to move people around and put us in a little better situation that way, better matchups,”
said Wings’ head coach Mike Babcock following Saturday’s 5-1 loss.
The 28-year-old had 23 goals and 44 points in 71 regular season games prior to being sidelined.
Related: Babcock to go with Mrazek for Game 3