James van Riemsdyk on Toronto: “It’s basically like playing for the NY Yankees of the NHL.”


It’s already been well established that the Schenn brothers are happy with the deal that sent Luke Schenn to the Philadelphia Flyers and James van Riemsdyk to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

They aren’t the only ones.

“To go to a place like Toronto is unbelievably exciting for me… It’s basically like playing for the NY Yankees of the NHL,” van Riemsdyk said, according to the Globe and Mail’s James Mirtle.

Well, yes, if the New York Yankees constantly struggled to even make the playoffs and hadn’t won a World Series since Lyndon B. Johnson was President.

Still, the Maple Leafs do have a huge fanbase that can be very harsh to players that don’t live up to their expectations. That might be of particular concern to a guy like van Riemsdyk, who has plenty of promise, but hasn’t broken out yet.

It’s encouraging to hear that van Riemsdyk is excited about what life in Toronto might bring and given that the Philadelphia Flyers have a passionate fanbase too, he should already have a good idea of what he’s getting into. The Leafs are expected to give him a big role in 2012-13 and there’s plenty of reasons to believe he will succeed.

PHT Morning Skate: Let the All-Star ballot box stuffing begin


PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Come one, come all. It’s time to load up the votes for the All-Star Game in Ottawa. (NHL)

The New York Yankees would still love to have a Winter Classic at Yankee Stadium. Hey guys, ditch the lame college bowl game and we’ll talk. (River Avenue Blues)

Eric Staal moving to the wing in Carolina? It could be a permanent thing. For the time being anyhow. (Raleigh N & O)

Brent Seabrook left last night’s game against Edmonton with a lower body injury. (Chicago Tribune)

NEWS FLASH! Stephane Auger continues to be a terrible referee that infuriates both teams. (Delaware County Times)

Bruce Boudreau paid a visit to the Hershey Bears. No, not for the chocolate tour. He needs to see what they’ve got for defensive help there instead. (CSNWashington)

Minnesota’s Marco Scandella has a concussion. We just really like the name Marco Scandella and hope for the best. (Russo’s Rants)

You can’t stop Steve Montador from scoring, you can only hope he allows you to go peacefully about your day. (CSNChicago)

The Wild get back on track and beat the Ducks 3-2 while chasing Jonas Hiller for good measure. (OC Register)

Finally, check out Flyers rookie Zac Rinaldo getting taught a lesson in fisticuffs by veteran Matt Bradley. (NHL)