William Nylander

William Nylander

25-Year-Old CenterC
Toronto Maple Leafs
2021 Fantasy Outlook
After pocketing a career-high 31 goals during the 2019-20 campaign, Nylander scored just 17 goals and 42 points in 52 appearances last season. It was the second time in the last five seasons that he failed to reach the 20-goal milestone. The 25-year-old winger has a pretty secure role in Toronto's top six but he saw his average time on ice drop from 18:13 to 16:36 last season. Nylander still shot at 12.8 percent, the second-best mark of his career, and also racked up eight points in seven postseason contests. If he can produce at a similar efficiency this season, he can easily climb back towards the 30-goal range while making an impact on the team's top power-play unit. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a six-year, $41.4 million contract extension with the Maple Leafs in December of 2018.
Hot start continues
CToronto Maple Leafs
October 14, 2021
Nylander provided a power-play goal and an assist in a 3-2 loss to the Senators on Thursday night.
ANALYSIS
After assisting on Jason Spezza's opening goal for the Leafs, Nylander helped cut the Sens' lead to just one on a fantastic pass from Spezza for the team's second power-play goal of the night. The Swedish forward has posted three points in Toronto's first two games and has 11 shots on goal in that same span.
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NHL Stats
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2020 NHL Game Log
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2021–22 Time On Ice Stats
  • Average Time On Ice:
    20:23
  • Average Power Play TOI:
    5:51
  • Average Short-Handed TOI:
    1:06
 
Ice Time
Power Play
Short-Handed
2019–20
18:13
2:53
0:01
2020–21
16:36
2:26
0:01
2021–22
20:23
5:51
1:06
Maple Leafs Depth Chart
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
Nylander had one of his best seasons yet in 2019-20, setting a new career high in goals (31) while adding 28 assists, 17 power-play points and 197 shots on goal in 68 games. He'll continue to receive plenty of ice time while skating in Toronto's top six and on its first power-play unit in 2020-21, but his goal total is probably due for some regression, as he'll likely shoot closer to his career percentage of 11.3 rather than the 15.7 percent he registered last season. Nonetheless, 25-plus goals and 60-plus points, around a quarter of which will come with the man advantage, seems like a certainty over the course of a full campaign for Nylander at this stage in his career, making him a solid pickup in the middle rounds of this year's fantasy drafts.
Nylander is the guy Leafs nation loves to hate, but the reality is quite simple. Wee Willie is an offensive stud whose game should be remarkably better this season than last. His offensive skills are a perfect fit with Auston Matthews and the two can demolish the competition when paired. You only need to look at what Nylander did at the World Championship in May to see what is to come. He led the competition with 18 points, including 13 assists, and a plus-16 rating in just eight games, and it earned him the honor of tourney MVP. As long as he has re-earned coach Mike Babcock's trust, Nylander should top 70 points this season. Draft him and reap the rewards.
Two full seasons, both with 61 points. Nylander has a quiver full of irresistible skills. He can wheel with the best. His passes are tape-to-tape. His thinking is elite. And he can snipe. Plus, Nylander's two-way game is the best among Toronto's young bucks. There's really nowhere but further up for the young Swede. But while both Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner have taken leaps in their games, Nylander has been more good than great. There has been no leap. He's best with Auston Matthews and that's where he'll skate. Fantasy-wise, Nylander's game isn't quite like David Pastrnak's -- at least not yet. But it's close to a healthy Jaden Schwartz and there's plenty of value in that, especially if he can take a 10-point leap in 2018-19.
Nylander exceeded all expectations last season. His 61 points tied him with teammate Mitch Marner for third in NHL rookie scoring, and he then took the hockey world by storm at the 2017 IIHF World Championships, carrying his Swedish team to a gold medal and in turn, winning MVP honors. For 2017-18, he's destined for the right side of the MMN line with Auston Matthews and newcomer Patrick Marleau, and that's a trio that could easily lead the NHL in scoring. Nylander already has freaky chemistry with Matthews, and the speedy Marleau is perhaps the one veteran that can both keep up with the young duo and also compete offensively. Nylander's star is rising, so wait on him for long — especially in keeper formats.
Nylander is one of the most highly skilled prospects to come out of Sweden in the last 15 years, maybe more. He's elite offensively and he's been the best player on just about every team he's played on. He was well on his way to setting new scoring standards for a teenager in the AHL last season, but a concussion at World Juniors derailed his game. He's a natural center, but is already penciled in as the Leafs' third-line right winger alongside newcomer Auston Matthews. There, Nylander will take the right-handed draws while getting a shot at running the second-unit power play from the right wall. He struggled his first time up with the Leafs last year, but not in his second time around the sun later in the season. Nylander drained 11 points in the Leafs' last 12 games while dragging around a couple bags of pucks for linemates. This season, Nylander is primed for a potential 45 points and maybe more. That would earn him talk in the Calder voting if Mr. Matthews wasn't already in the game.
Nylander is tagged to toil at center this season, and he’ll do that in the AHL. We know, we know – that’s heartbreaking for all of the prospect-loving fantasy owners who are salivating over his skill, speed and smarts. But here’s the bottom line: Nylander’s skill would be wasted on the wing, where he initially skated upon arriving in the AHL. He played center for Modo of the Swedish Hockey League before coming to North America, putting up 20 points in 21 games there before ripping off another 32 in 37 AHL games. Nylander needs the puck, and he needs it in open ice. His vision is elite, and he can set guys up in his sleep. He and 2015 No. 4 overall pick Mitch Marner could be the Leafs’ top two centers for a long, long time. But first, he’ll need at least a full season in the AHL, maybe two, to learn how to play on North America's smaller ice. Dynasty leaguers should already have him rostered, but single-season owners should leave him on the wire.
Nylander is a human highlight reel. His creativity with the puck is unmatched in the 2014 draft class, and he can make the puck dance -- and opponents stumble -- with a deft sleight of hand. Add in elite skating and you have a near-perfect possession-style winger. He played last season for Modo alongside former NHLer and teammate Jeff Tambellini, who thinks Nylander could deliver 100 points in the NHL. That’s heavy praise for a kid who already doesn’t lack any confidence. Still, the son of former NHLer Michael Nylander has some serious work to do on his defensive game (think: find one and fast). But when he does, Nylander could become the next Henrik Zetterberg. He’s a few seasons away from making a dent, but he’s worth stashing in dynasty leagues.
More Fantasy News
Snipes go-ahead goal
CToronto Maple Leafs
October 13, 2021
Nylander scored a goal on five shots and had two PIM in Wednesday's 2-1 win over Montreal.
ANALYSIS
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Will get chance on penalty kill
CToronto Maple Leafs
October 12, 2021
Nylander will get a chance to kill penalties this season, reports the Toronto Star.
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Fifth playoff goal not enough
CToronto Maple Leafs
May 31, 2021
Nylander scored a goal on two shots and added two hits in Monday's 3-1 loss to the Canadiens in Game 7.
ANALYSIS
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Two helpers in Game 5 loss
CToronto Maple Leafs
May 27, 2021
Nylander notched a pair of assists and four shots on goal in Thursday's 4-3 overtime loss to the Canadiens in Game 5.
ANALYSIS
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Goals in four straight
CToronto Maple Leafs
May 25, 2021
Nylander scored a goal on his only shot of the game Tuesday in a 4-0 win over Montreal in Game 4.
ANALYSIS
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