Sheldon Keefe Makes Controversial Statement About Brad Marchand After Impact With Knies

Graham Montgomery
March 8, 2024  (10:24)

Toronto Maple Leafs rookie forward Matthew Knies down on the ice in pain
Photo credit: Sportsnet

The Toronto Maple Leafs And Boston Bruins have one of the most historic rivalries in the NHL. As such, it is not often individuals from one organization defend the other. However, that is exactly what happened last night.

Knies Leaves Game After Collision With Marchand

Early in the game, Leafs rookie Matthew Knies was involved in a scary collision with Bruins captain Brad Marchand. The 21-year-old seemed to get the worse of it as Marchand was hardly phased. However, the play sent Knies to the Leafs locker room, where he would remain for the rest of the game.
The status of the rookie forward was one of many topics that head coach Sheldon Keefe addressed following the 4-1 loss on home ice. What exactly he had to say about the play raised some eyebrows.

Keefe Defends Marchand After Collision With Knies

Keefe elected not to blame Marchand for the injury to Knies. He noted that the play was not intentional as neither player noticed each other until it was too late. Marchand saw the collision coming earlier though so he had more time to prepare for impact. The coach believes this is why Knies got the worse end of the stick.
"I think it is tough guys who are kind of going for the same ice and don't really see each other. I think their guy realized they were on the tracks quicker than our guy did and prepared for it. I think that's all I see there."

Perhaps more importantly, he also addressed the rookie's status. Unfortunately though, he could not give us an update.
However, other reports have already come out indicating that Knies is unlikely to miss significant time. He was supposedly held out of the remainder of the game simply as a precaution.
Things can change but early word on Matthew Knies is that his injury is not serious and he's being kept out as a precaution. We'll see.