BRANDON, Fla. — Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe will keep Alex Kerfoot on the first line alongside Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner when their first-round playoff series with the Tampa Bay Lightning resumes on Sunday.
The Lightning used the line of Alex Killorn, Brayden Point and Anthony Cirelli against Michael Bunting, Matthews and Marner and were effective through two periods of play and limited Toronto’s top line to no scoring chances or shot attempts through 40 minutes.
That prompted Keefe to swap Kerfoot back onto the top line to begin the third period of their 5-2 win against the Lightning in Game 3, while moving Bunting further down the lineup.
“I thought that line had a hard time last night,” Keefe said. “It’s coming back from an injury and you’re also coming in playing in the playoffs for the first time, especially when you’re going to play on that line, it’s not easy minutes.”
Bunting missed the first game of the series with an undisclosed injury and returned for Game 2 and scored his first postseason goal. With his top line needing help, Keefe went to Kerfoot shortly after he made a mistake while on the penalty kill that led to Tampa’s first goal of the game in Game 3.
“He made a bit of …
Author: David Alter / The Leafs Nation