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FTB: Happy Birthday, JvR!

This may be the last birthday we share together.

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Montreal Canadiens Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

The Marlies won the first game if their playoff series against the Syracuse Crunch last night with a socre of 5-4. It was quite a fast paced game and got a little physical at times.

One immediate question concerns Andreas Borgman. He went down after an awkward collision and needed assistance from the trainers to make it off the ice and back to the locker room. He visibly had great difficulty walking down the hall to the room. Borgman had just returned to the lineup after another injury kept him out of three games in the previous series against the Comets.

There was no update available after the game as to whether this was a new injury or an aggrevation of the previous one. Marlies coach Sheldon Keefe almost never talks about injury specifics or timelines anyway, so we may have to wait until their next game on Saturday to find out his status.

We’ll have a recap of the game out later today. In the meantime, enjoy this goal by Pierre Engvall, his third of the playoffs.

Happy Birthday JvR

Do you rememer when the Maple Leafs traded Luke Schenn to the Flyers for James van Riemsdyk? I can’t believe it’s been almost six years now.

I remember the first time I met him. He asked me for directions.

Yes, it’s as banal as that. I was walking along King Street, heading to work. It was early morning. I remember the weather was quite nice. As I crossed Church Street a very tall and very fit young man with a mole on his cheek was there looking confused. He was familiar, but I wasn’t sure from where I recognized him. He asked me the direction to Yonge Street. I pointed it out to him, he thanked me, and he took off with great speed.

I didn’t realise until much later that I had met my new favourite Maple Leaf.

This was the summer he was traded to Toronto, before the lockout which cut the 2012-13 season in half. When the NHL picked up again the Leafs made it to the post-season and famously met the Bruins in the first round of the playoffs. That series had one of my favourite JvR goals of all time simply because of the way he falls after getting the puck in the net.

Of course, none can top the famous JvR Schenn goal. I had the privilige of being at that game and seeing it in person. Pretty much everyone immediately realised what had happened and went wild mocking the Flyers.

Will we get another season to enjoy his dirty goals and mile wide shoulders?

Whatever happens, have a happy 29th birthday, JvR!

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