Toronto Maple Leafs: Why James Van Riemsdyk Will Excel This Season in Toronto

January 29th, 2013 by Jonathan Reid Leave a reply »
James van Riemsdyk's first five games as a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs have been impressive.

In fact, van Riemsdyk is actually tied for the team lead in goals scored, with three to start the young (and shortened) season.

In just 15 minutes of ice time per game, van Riemsdyk has made his presence felt, whether he's been playing alongside the resurgent Nazem Kadri on Toronto's third line, or with Mikhail Grabovski and Nikolai Kulemin on Toronto's second offensive unit.

Leafs fans shouldn't necessarily expect JvR to continue to average a goal in 60 percent of Toronto's remaining games, but they should also understand that this is the season that van Riemsdyk could have his breakout year.

For starters, JvR will be relied upon more in Toronto to provide offense than he was as a member of the Philadelphia Flyers, even if he's still playing on Toronto's third line (which won't be happening for a while, as Joffrey Lupul isn't expected to return for another few weeks).

This is also a kid who was selected second overall in the 2007 NHL entry draft, which should tell fans just how good he can be.

While 2007's draft wasn't ...

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