Toronto’s head athletic trainer Nikki Huffman will be leaving her role with the club to start her own business, as reported by Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi.
This move will leave a significant gap in the Blue Jays high-performance department, which she joined after the 2015 season. The team is expected to look both within the organization and externally for a replacement, with assistant athletic trainers Voon Chong and Jose Ministral remaining with the club.
“Over the past four years, Nikki has contributed significantly to our evolution of providing cutting edge training and care to our players,” said Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins in s statement shared with MLB.com. “We thank her for her tireless work ethic and look forward to seeing her success in the opportunities that lie ahead.”
Huffman’s journey to MLB started at Averett University, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in athletic training while playing both basketball and lacrosse. She also earned a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences, and a post-professional sports residency and Division I sports fellowship at Duke.
She was promoted to the role of ead athletic trainer for the Blue Jays on December 22, 2017 after George Poulis left to take on the same role with the Atlanta Braves after 15 years in Toronto. Huffman’s two years in the position marked the second time a woman ever served as the head athletic trainer for any team in the NHL, NFL, NBA or MLB.
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