Maple Leafs have no excuses this season, Campbell says

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Jack Campbell is motivated by the disappointment of last season’s first-round playoff loss and the Toronto Maple Leafs goalie is out to prove any doubters wrong this season.

“There’s no doubt in the desire to win and the things we’re willing to do and just how much we care as a group,” Campbell said on the episode of the “NHL @TheRink” podcast that debuted Wednesday. “We’re with the fans. We want it so bad. There’s no excuses. We’re using it to fuel us, and I think you’ll see that. You’ll see it this season.”

The Maple Leafs lost in seven games to the Montreal Canadiens in the Stanley Cup First Round after taking a 3-1 lead through four games. Campbell allowed nine goals in Games 5-7 after allowing four goals through the first four games.

Campbell joined the podcast to promote and discuss “All or Nothing: Toronto Maple Leafs,” a five-part docuseries covering the Maple Leafs’ 2020-21 season that will premiere on Amazon Prime in North America on Friday and will be available in 240 countries and territories worldwide.

The cameras for the Canadian Amazon Original series give the viewer an insider access into the Maple Leafs’ world capturing exclusive footage of players, coaches and executives.

“You get to see different things you definitely wouldn’t normally be able to see, that’s for sure,” Campbell said. “The interactions with teammates, coaches and management and their interactions, and just different things around the rink. I think it’s just really cool even as a player to see some of those things that we don’t often get to be a part of. I think the fans will be really excited. It’s definitely a cool show.”

Campbell said watching the series was even eye-opening to him because he got to see a different side of the business, particularly the interactions between Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas and coach Sheldon Keefe.

“We know about playing the game and what comes with that but seeing Kyle do his job a little bit and Sheldon, you get a glimpse of both of them,” Campbell said. “Obviously, it’s just a little bit here and there so we don’t get the full thing but it’s definitely really cool insight of just the passion and intensity that comes with the territory.”

The series also serves as a reminder to Campbell and the Maple Leafs about how last season ended. Toronto hasn’t won a Stanley Cup Playoffs series since 2004.

“Ultimately, I had some personal success but honestly winning in the playoffs, that’s our goal and unfortunately that’s the end result of the show that everybody knows,” Campbell said.

Campbell was 17-3-2 with a 2.15 goals-against average, .921 save percentage and two shutouts in 22 games. He set an NHL record for victories to start a season by winning his first 11 games.

He said fans will understand the level of commitment the Maple Leafs have after watching the show.

“I think our standard is high so the only way to get to where we want to go is to be great each day,” Campbell said. “If we just focus on right now and having a good practice and then the next day having a great game, I think that will give us a lot of momentum. It’s a tough league. We have a tough division. We’ve got to get into the playoffs so everybody’s mindset should be learning and being better each day. I’ve got full confidence that if we have that mindset and we just keep working as a team I think we’re going to have great success, regular season and playoffs.”

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