Former Leaf Makes a Major Revelation About his Relationship with Sheldon Keefe

Julien Trekker
September 9, 2023  (10:26)

Sheldon Keefe's contract extension caught many off guard after a lot of speculation that he might not return as the Leafs' coach. However, this wasn't a shock to Pierre Engvall, a former member of the Leafs.

Ex-Leaf Discusses His Bond with Keefe

Speaking on the 32 Thoughts podcast with Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek, Pierre Engvall expressed his appreciation for his ex-coach, Sheldon Keefe.

"I think when Keefe came in, he knew what I could do in the AHL and he believed that I could do it in the NHL, too. After my first game there, I got my goal and I think from then on, I understood, like, what I did in the AHL maybe I can do in the NHL."

"I felt like he believed in me, but he also could tell me I needed to play better. Laughs. We had a pretty good relationship, I think. But he told me when I didn't play well. He was honest about that."

Keefe's talent for creating bonds and uplifting players in a manner they value probably weighed in on Treliving's decision to retain him.

Engvall Talks About What It's Like Playing for the Leafs


Engvall, in the same podcast, delved into the unique experience of playing for the NHL's top market.
"Obviously, it can be a challenging market to play in, especially with the media," Engvall told Friedman and Marek about Toronto.

"But I think you can use it to your advantage, too. The media was always good to me and everyone was really kind. I have nothing negative to say about that. You can feel there's more pressure there, I think. You can sense it in the air, somehow.

"I think it was great to play for Toronto. And I believe it really prepares you for what's coming next. I had a wonderful time there and I feel I developed well playing for Toronto."

There you have it! Engvall's open reflection on his Toronto tenure offers a fresh perspective. While players' opinions on the Leafs' environment might differ, Engvall's remarks offer a glimmer of optimism about Keefe's renewed contract.