When you combine injuries to Dave Bolland and Tyler Bozak with Nazem Kadri’s suspension, it’s clear that the Toronto Maple Leafs are in trouble at center. Head coach Randy Carlyle didn’t smokescreen people when asked if that’s why James van Riemsdyk has been moved to the middle.
Carlyle to @reporterchris when asked about JvR at centre: “I don’t have anybody else, & you’re a smart enough guy, you can figure that out.”
— Stephen Whyno (@SWhyno) November 16, 2013
The numbers don’t look very good so far, as TSN’s Mark Masters points out.
Last 5 games for JVR: 0 points, 11 shots, -3, 6 PIM & 40% face-off percentage
— Mark Masters (@markhmasters) November 16, 2013
Those are some rough stats, but Masters noted a tidbit that’s probably more telling: tonight marked the first time Toronto took more shots than its opponents since Oct. 5.
Sometimes it’s more comforting for people to scapegoat a single player, though.