Maple Leafs, Sheldon Keefe each slapped with hefty fine following game against the Blues

Published December 28, 2022 at 4:46 PM
BY MIKE ARMENTI
The Toronto Maple Leafs and head coach Sheldon Keefe may be happy to have picked up the two points last night in St. Louis, but I would bet that neither the team nor the coach is very happy with a pair of fines handed down by the league on Wednesday.

First, the Leafs were fined $100,000 for traveling to St. Louis earlier than allowed by the collective bargaining agreement. The Leafs chose to travel within the timeline of the league issued holiday break and as such, ended up violating Article 16.5B of the CBA. The NHL's holiday break was supposed to run from December 24th through December 27th. The Leafs traveled to St. Louis on December 26th to prevent having to play a game on a travel day.

While that one was bad enough, the League then slapped head coach Sheldon Keefe with a fine for "demeaning conduct directed at the officials" during the game against the Blues. Keefe was on the officials all night for their incompetence and willful ignorance, but the incident that likely resulted in the fine occurred in the 3rd period just before the Jordan Kyrou game-tying goal, when the Blues ran a pick, similar to the one Justin Holl was penalized for in Game 7 vs the Bolts back in May. Here's Keefe's reaction to the play.




Following the game, Keefe also criticized the officials for missing a late high-stick on Zach Aston-Reese that resulted in the veteran forward needing medical attention, bleeding pretty profusely. These plays are almost always called and since the high stick in question would have given the Leafs a 4-minute power play in the dying minutes of a 4-4 game, the officials basically refused to call it, regardless of what the rule says in the rulebook.

"Watching Zach Aston-Reese getting sewn up on the table after the game is a little hard to take. But we're happy with the two points."

- Keefe when asked about the officiating in St. Louis

Personally, I thought the way the officials called last night's game was horrendous and probably warranted a talking to by the head of officiating. Keefe had every right to be frustrated and since nobody knows what the rules are anymore, it's up to the officials to set the precedent and stick to it. At least then, it's not as thought they're picking and choosing what to call.


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