TLN Player Profile: James van Riemsdyk

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James van Riemsdyk has never been the best forward on an NHL hockey team. With the departure of a certain #81 from the roster, the one they call JVR certainly has a chance to make his case this season as the Leafs’ marquee forward. In what might be the most imporant season yet for him, JVR’s performance this season (good or bad) will likely dictate his future with this team.

Origin Story

A highly-touted American prospect drafted 2nd overall in the 2007 draft, JVR went through an interesting phase at the start of his career where he played with a team called the “Philadelphia Flyers.” 

JVR had a decent, but not world-beating stint in Philadelphia. Then this happened:

Career Statistics


From the HERO chart, we see van Riemsdyk as one of the game’s better goal scorers and a solid point producer, but we also see his extreme statistical defensive shortcomings based on his CA60 +/- numbers. The genius of Mike Babcock may be able to correct it, or maybe he’s just not the best defensive player around. 

What to expect

JVR definitely is one of the main contenders to lead the team in scoring, but whether he can elevate his game when being trusted as the team’s top winger is yet to be seen. He’ll likely pot anywhere between 25-35 goals, as has been his standard production of late. Though JVR will most likely continue playing on the team’s top line, who he’ll spend playing the year playing with will most likely have the largest impact on his performance. 



A photo posted by James van Riemsdyk (@jvanriemsdyk) on


JVR doesn’t actually have any highlights, he just finds a way to tap everything into the net somehow. As a pure goal-scoring poacher, he’s one of the league’s best.