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“No updates” as Sheldon Keefe stays mum on the Maple Leafs lineup card and Nylander skates

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Photo credit:Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Jon Steitzer
1 month ago
Updated at 2:35pm ET
Coming out of Game One there were a lot of questions for the Leafs head coach and at least on the most basic ones, Sheldon Keefe was unwilling to provide answers:
Now that the series has started and Game One already showcased the two coaches being unwilling to detail their plans publicly this should have been expected. Don’t get me wrong, the Leafs beat reporters have to ask the question, but if you are going to be upset at Sheldon Keefe it probably shouldn’t be over this.
There wasn’t much coming out of the Leafs’ players either regarding William Nylander as Jake McCabe provided a “He seemed to be in good spirits today. Not going to speak too much on it.” and Ryan Reaves added, “I don’t know what his status is, hopefully he’s ready to go.” (Both quotes via David Alter.)
Update: William Nylander skates with the Game One scratches at an optional skate.
What is clear is that there is a real need for William Nylander in the Leafs’ lineup whether it is top loading the lineup or spreading out Toronto’s offence, Nylander can make a real difference, especially with the Leafs struggles to move the puck through the neutral zone. Given that skill the question can also be raised about who it is most important for Nylander to play with to optimize the Leafs need for puck control.
One of the other areas that William Nylander seems to be sorely missed is on the powerplay, and whether Nylander is good to go or not, the Calle Jarnkrok on the top powerplay unit experiment is likely to come to a close. Whether it is Nylander or Bertuzzi, someone will be taking Jarnkrok’s spot.
The Leafs goaltending situation is another mystery and one that Sheldon Keefe is happy to keep. It’s not that Joseph Woll had much success against the Bruins this season but he is familiar with them and while Ilya Samsonov had a rough start, it wasn’t one that eliminates the possibility the Leafs go back to him either.
After a 5-1 beating in Game One it is reasonable to expect that the Leafs will have a lot of options they are considering for Game Two. The Bruins have been able to answer the Leafs no matter what this season but maybe the element of surprise will help.

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