With the way that Kessel and van Riemsdyk have been playing this season, this decision was inevitable. Also, in a short tournament where chemistry is key to achieving success, they will probably be playing together with the USA.
The question is, who will be playing with them? It’s often a question among Leaf fans who don’t like Tyler Bozak as the No. 1 center. Those fans would love if the Leafs had the choices that Team USA does.
Kessel and JVR are most likely going to be on the second line with Zach Parise and Patrick Kane manning the wings on the first line. Pavelski will most likely end up centering that line, leaving four more players to choose from if that is the case.
If the US wants to get back to the Gold Medal Game in Sochi, it’s a safe bet that Kessel and van Riemsdyk will be a big factor in that. They will need to find the right center for them to be successful. Leaf fans can attest to that. With Nazem Kadri as their center, the pair weren’t difference makers. All of a sudden Tyler Bozak comes back and they were scoring goals left and right.
So with all that said,