LEAFS NOTES: Robertson checks himself into Keefe’s decision-making for Maple Leafs roster

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Nick Robertson was a success on Friday evening.


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The very fact he truly threw one within the Maple Leafs’ Blue and White scrimmage at Scotiabank Enviornment introduced a smile to the face of coach Sheldon Keefe.

Robertson, who performed the left wing on a line with David Kampf and Ondrej Kase, is assured nothing on the Leafs’ roster and has to make use of each likelihood he will get to burrow his means into Keefe’s decision-making.

When Robertson received the physique on Mitch Marner within the first interval, Keefe took be aware. The play got here on the finish boards following a Marner penalty shot. For the sake of the scrimmage, gamers from the opposing aspect had been in a position to pursue the penalty-shot taker.

Robertson caught as much as Marner and completed the verify. Marner, not thrilled within the second, pushed again earlier than scoring on a move from Nick Ritchie.


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“I appreciated that play quite a bit,” Keefe stated. “It could be really easy to glide and provides the man his shot, however Nick pushed by means of there, it’s the competitor that he’s.

“(The sport) usually was a no-hitter, however in that second, I appreciated the competitiveness. That’s what you’re searching for. You’re searching for guys which might be going to make it very apparent they’re right here to win the job.

“Not everyone’s prepared to do these sorts of issues, so I respect that. Nick is a man who I don’t ever query how a lot he desires it and what he’s prepared to do by way of effort.”

Robertson has been given some new obligations since camp began, together with some work on the penalty kill. It’s going to be amongst his duties if he begins the season with the Toronto Marlies, which might be a great assumption. Robertson’s smarts and quickness lend themselves to being efficient on the kill.


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“I like the PK,” Robertson stated. “It’s a method to present my tenacity. All the pieces is ready for the opposing staff, it’s straightforward to get my toes transferring and interrupt their play. It’s an important asset to my sport.”

How in regards to the hit on Marner?

“I feel I went in possibly slightly too exhausting on him,” Robertson stated. “With plenty of pace, I went in and it appeared extra intentional (than it was).”


Michael Hutchinson might cease each shot he sees for the rest of the pre-season and he wouldn’t transfer previous third on the Leafs’ goaltending depth chart. In succession within the first interval, Hutchinson made comparatively troublesome saves on Marner, William Nylander and Ritchie … Ritchie’s feed to Marner from the nook was the type of factor you’re going to count on to see from the pair as soon as the common season begins. Rely on it being extra Marner to Ritchie than the opposite means round … If everyone seems to be wholesome to start out on Oct. 13 when the Montreal Canadiens go to, it’s going to be intriguing to see how Keefe settles on along with his ahead strains. Ritchie would flank Auston Matthews and Marner. John Tavares and Nylander are the second-line pair, with Kampf and Kase wanting good as a third-line duo. That would depart Alex Kerfoot, Ilya Mikheyev and Michael Bunting for 2 spots. None of them, usually, could be a fourth-line participant. Bunting has extra of a knack to attain than Mikheyev and needs to be with Tavares. Mikheyev’s mind is suited to enhance Kampf and Kase. A fourth line Kerfoot between Jason Spezza and Wayne Simmonds, or maybe Adam Brooks between Kerfoot and Spezza? That’s depth … Nylander broke in alone on Hutchinson as the primary interval ended and the goalie got here up with a giant cease. After the buzzer sounded, Nylander skated again to the crease and gave the netminder a stick faucet and fist bump … Bunting, who has 4 targets in two pre-season video games, re-directed a Kampf move for White’s second objective. Subsequent for Bunting, preserve the nice groove going when he performs within the Leafs’ remaining three pre-season video games … Nylander stole the puck from Tavares early within the second and put it on Mikheyev’s tape for a objective … Jake Muzzin was ticked at an offside name in a meaningless scrimmage. Some issues can’t be turned off … The third interval strictly was for the work of particular groups. The Leafs scored 5 power-play targets towards, er, themselves. “It allowed some confidence to develop,” Keefe stated. “The puck was moved round fairly good.” … The sport was performed earlier than a crowd of 4,423 front-line employees and important employees and their households. The ultimate rating was 7-6 White.


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Good on the Leafs to signal Keefe to a two-year extension. Stress comes with the job, as Keefe has stated, however it gained’t negatively impression his day by day duties. “It’s nice for my household, in fact, however it hasn’t modified something by way of my strategy,” Keefe stated. “If something, it permits me to give attention to doing my job as finest I can with none distractions.” … The Leafs signed ahead Braeden Kressler, who carried out nicely within the rookie event final month in Traverse Metropolis, Mich., to a three-year entry-level contract. The Kitchener native had 18 factors in 46 video games for Flint of the Ontario Hockey League two seasons in the past … The Leafs may have a full day without work on Saturday earlier than returning to observe on Sunday. They’re again in Ottawa to face the Senators on Monday earlier than their penultimate pre-season sport, at house towards the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday.



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