5/17/18 | On the 31 Thoughts podcast this week, Jeff Marek asked Elliotte Friedman about the Rangers and Sheldon Keefe and Friedman responded, "I don't think that it would be a huge surprise, Keefe's name has been out there a lot but I have been led to believe he is not the guy for the Rangers." (Sportsnet)
Friedman continued, "Keefe's a name I have heard a lot but I have been told it's probably not him, he is the first guy that jumped into my head. They must be waiting to talk to Keefe who has the Marlies in the playoffs but guys tell me that they don't think that is it."
He added that he has heard that it likely won't be Washington assistant Layne Lambert or Pascal Vincent, the coach AHL coach for the Jets.
5/15/18 | On Hockey Central at Noon today, former Rangers forward Marc Savard said that he thinks the Rangers are waiting to speak with Toronto Marlies coach Sheldon Keefe.
Savard said, "I believe that and it's why they haven't made a move."
Damien Cox said that if the Rangers go after Keefe it would indicate that they "want to play a different way, they don't want to play the way they have been playing and they want to change how they are doing it."
Cox added, ""Keefe, given the way he coached in the SOO (Sault Ste. Marie in the OHL) and with the Marlies, he would be a culture change for how the Rangers play.
Larry Brooks has written recently that it appears Jeff Gorton is waiting to speak with coaches who are still involved with both the AHL and NHL playoffs. (NY Post)
Keefe's Toronto Marlies are the AHL Eastern Conference Finals against Philly's AHL team. That series begins on Saturday.
Keefe coached two and a half seasons in the OHL, including time where he coached Rangers prospect Brandon Halverson, and has spent the past three seasons coaching the AHL Marlies.
Ryan Ward, who worked with Keefe early on in his time with the Marlies, says that Keefe is a great teacher of "offense" and is a "very effective communicator as far as teaching the game, especially to young players." (The Athletic)
Adam Rotter: The Rangers have no pressure to hire a coach until the week before free agency starts, so they can take their time and wait to speak with anyone that they even have a sliver of interest in. I'm guessing they have more than a sliver of interest in Keefe as he seems to check off a lot of the boxes for what they seem to be looking for. Keefe and Jim Montgomery were the two most buzzed about candidates after the season and with Montgomery gone, the Rangers may have to wait upwards of a month, if Keefe's team keeps winning, before they get a chance to speak with the Marlies coach. Keefe is going to be an NHL coach, either with the Rangers this summer or some other team that fires their coach after next year. He doesn't have any NHL coaching experience, but the Rangers are going to hire the person they feel is best and Keefe could be someone that grows alongside Filip Chytil, Lias Andersson and the rest.