So this was written before Josh Jooris got put on waivers. It’s probably a good sign that we should have wrapped up this On the Bubble thing before the bubbles burst. Anyway, since Josh Jooris stands a pretty good chance of being recalled, and Freddie Gauthier stands an excellent chance of not panning out, I’m posting it anyway, because really, how much do we know about Josh Jooris?
For those of you new to this, JoJoo is Josh Jooris. It’s a thing. Get used to it. You love it already.
Anyway, we’re pretty much at endgame of this whole On the Bubble thing and all that’s left to do is raise the issue of the Josh Jooris. The guy who could be the interim fourth line center or potential 13th forward for the Leafs.
The Story on JoJoo
Josh Jooris a 6’1, 28 year old right shooting center. That should hold a lot of appeal for Leafs fans right there. That’s why we’ll start with that. He’s not too old, he’s a right shot that is lacking up the middle, and his size certainly doesn’t hinder him in anyway.
That said, Jooris seems like a better fit for the Marlies 3rd line than he does for the Leafs 4th line. While Jooris spent a stretch from the 2014-15 season to the 2016-17 season with a job in the NHL, over that time at no point was Jooris ever a significant offensive contributor. With Kapanen, and Johnsson pretty much locked in as the wingers for that line, Jooris’ lack of offensive flare might hold him back.
Counter to that statement, is the fact that Mike Babcock lost Leo Komarov and Matt Martin over the summer, and having a player like Jooris at his disposal might be a security blanket for him.
Sure. That’s something. I mean, yeah. Okay, Josh Jooris a decent rookie campaign followed up by harsh realities followed up by the realization that he’s a depth forward it doesn’t hurt to keep around. The points per 60 at least show that there might be some offensive capability to go with Kapanen and Johnsson, and that as a highly sheltered line, they could have some success.
Best Case Scenario for JoJoo?
He beats out Adam Cracknell, Par Lindholm, and Freddie Gauthier to be the Leafs fourth line center, and somehow the Leafs don’t decide to just run with 3 centers, because look at that. It’s the most underwhelming training camp battle of all time. The reality is that at some point all of these players will get their shot as the 4th line center before someone new is eventually brought in at the trade deadline for a price we shouldn’t be comfortable with.
Worst Case Scenario?
I’m not sure if the worst case is that Jooris goes bouncing around the league, repeatedly being put on waivers whenever a team thinks they may need him, or if the worst case scenario is that he settles in to a season long stint with the Marlies. I’m sure all the possibilities for what happens are things that Jooris was prepared for when he joined the Leafs, and playing another season of pro hockey in North America probably suits him just fine.
I’ll admit now. This section was a bad idea when I first started the series, and was probably only warranted for discussing a couple of players like Pickard, Borgman, and Leivo. Josh Jooris isn’t advancing beyond the fourth line.
What’s Likely to Happen?
The most likely option at this point seems to be that Jooris will be taking a trip on the waiver wire and start the year with the Marlies. There is the possibility that Nylander won’t return, or Hyman will still be hurt enough that he sticks around, or that players like Trevor Moore or Par Lindholm may be sent down ahead of Jooris due to not requiring waivers, but that doesn’t seem like how it’s going to play out.
Jooris will probably make a return at some point during the season depending on how he does with the Marlies, and depending on what Kyle Dubas and Mike Babcock feel they need in the lineup at the time of the need for a recall, but at the end of the day we’re looking at a serviceable AHLer who will help the Marlies out this year.