Seeking Employment: Four Possibilities for Sheldon Keefe to Land

Sheldon Keefe a free agent after being fired by the Maple Leafs. Where would he find himself next? Michael DeRosa offers his selections.

On Thursday, the Toronto Maple Leafs took a significant but anticipated step by removing Sheldon Keefe from his head coaching position. This is a reasonable move following yet another first-round exit. For Toronto, a bench overhaul was long needed.

Even if Keefe was never able to take the Maple Leafs on an extended postseason run, clubs ought to still call him during the regular season. Which teams, though, may be interested in the 43-year-old? Now let’s talk about a few possible landing areas.

Devils of New Jersey
NHL source Pierre LeBrun stated shortly after Keefe was fired that he thought the New Jersey Devils would be interested in interviewing him. The Ottawa Senators hired Travis Green, the former interim coach, so the Devils are currently looking for a new head coach.

USA TODAY Sports’ Vincent Carchietta

It’s important to remember that Keefe is not the Devils’ sole choice, despite the fact that connections to him are growing rapidly. As for Craig Berube and Jay Woodcroft, they are reportedly interested in both, so Keefe will have competition for the Devils job. Still, New Jersey is a team to keep an eye on, considering how rapidly they have been associated with him.

Jets of Winnipeg
Rick Bowness stated earlier this week that he is retiring from coaching after a lengthy and distinguished career. Keefe might be a good fit for the Winnipeg Jets, who are now in need of a new head coach.

For USA TODAY Sports, Jerome Miron

Given their potential to be serious competitors, the Jets probably want a well-known coach in the dugout. It is therefore not surprising that they would be considering Keefe. An added plus is that he has coached a Canadian squad before.

San Jose Sharks
Keefe might be ready for a vacation from the pressures of leading a major league team after leading the NHL franchise in the most competitive market for a few years. Therefore, managing a young, rebuilding team like the San Jose Sharks might be a fit for him.

America TODAY Sports’ Robert Edwards

After the season, the Sharks cut ties with David Quinn, and Keefe would be a huge improvement. Given this, Keefe might be a fantastic coach for Macklin Celebrini, a strong talent, when he launches his career.

Penguins of Pittsburgh
Mike Sullivan is the head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins as of right now. However, many have questioned if the Penguins could part ways with him after he missed the playoffs in consecutive seasons. Should they do so, Pittsburgh would undoubtedly target Keefe.

USA TODAY Sports’ Dennis Schneidler

Keefe and Penguins general manager Kyle Dubas have a long history together. Keefe was hired by Dubas to lead the Toronto Marlies, the Soo Greyhounds, and, of course, the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s obvious that Dubas likes the way Keefe instructs, so a reunion makes sense.

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