The Toronto Maple Leafs are running out of time as they need to come to agreement with free agent William Nylander on a new contract before Dec. 1. And so far, things are not looking up…
So much, that the Maple Leafs have no other choice to discuss with teams that might be interesting in landing the talented forward, while being able to offer him a hefty deal. While there is nothing new in this revelation that Nylander is on the trade market, NHL insider Elliotte Friedman has revealed that the Leafs might have changed their minds on what they are expecting to get in return if they accomplish a blockbuster move involving Nylander.
On the air of Sportsnet 960 on Monday, Friedman mentioned that the Leafs are not necessarily seeking a right-hand defenseman, which might lead to other teams making an offer to Nylander.
“Everybody looks at Toronto and says they’re going to look for defense, especially right defense, in a trade. I’m not convinced of that. They may, but I think that what they’re going to do for Nylander is what’s the best deal we could make. They’re not going to pigeonhole themselves into a right-shot defenseman if it’s not the best player they could get.
“They’re going to go out for the best they can get, and they’re worry about their defense somewhere else.”
The Hurricanes have been mentioned several times in the latest Nylander trade rumors, and of course, that hasn’t changed. However now, anyone will ask about him.
“I do think the Hurricanes are a big one,” added Friedman. “I think the Kings have been involved. I think Minnesota has been involved. I have speculated Philadelphia as a team that makes a lot of sense, although I can’t prove it.
“I’m sure there’s more. I look at a team like Pittsburgh that’s been struggling, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they’ve kicked the tires. I’m not sure they can do it, but I’m sure that they’ve asked.
“Everybody is going to ask, right. They’re going to say, ‘What’s this going to cost us.’
Michael Nylander, William’s father, has reportedly been a major impediment to getting this deal done and there has been rampant speculation that it is Michael who has insisted that his son not budge an inch from his initial demands. Those demands are believed to be upwards of $8 million per season on a new deal for Nylander.
Sportsnet NHL insider Chris Johnston reported that the Maple Leafs made Nylander an offer that would have put him on par with Boston’s David Pastrnak, that is to say an offer of a $40 million dollar contract over the course of the next six NHL seasons, however that deal was reportedly turned down by the Nylander camp.