Drastic turn of events for William Nylander at World Championship.
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Drastic turn of events for William Nylander at World Championship.

The Toronto Maple Leafs forward initially rushed to attend the World Championship, but something has caused a drastic shift.

Jonathan Larivee

There has been a drastic turn of events for Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander at the International Ice Hockey Federation's World Championship of Hockey, but at this time it is unclear why.

Fans of the Maple Leafs will be aware of the fact that Nylander initially bolted out of Toronto after the Maple Leafs were eliminated from Stanley Cup playoff contention by the Florida Panthers in 5 games, a decision he made due to his desire to represent his country on the international stage.

The opportunity to represent Sweden would have allowed Nylander to play alongside his brother Alex as well as former Toronto Maple Leafs teammate Rasmus Sandin, but a drastic turn of events on Saturday has cancelled those plans. According to a report from Swedish media, Sweden's head coach Sam Hallam has confirmed that William Nylander will not be joining his squad after all. Hallam confirmed on Saturday that he had his complete roster, and the elder Nylander remained notably absent from that roster.

No official reason for Nylander's exclusion from the roster has been given but you have to wonder if the uncertainty around his future with the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League may have played a role here. Not only is Nylander heading into the final year of his deal as a Maple Leaf, one that will see him become an unrestricted free agent at its conclusion, but he also has a limited no trade clause that kicks in on July 1st which complicates matters for the Leafs.

Nylander will likely be seeing a significant raise on his next deal and there are questions about whether or not that deal will come from the Maple Leafs or if he will be traded to another team prior to signing a new contract. The turmoil surrounding the firing of now former Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas on Friday has only added to that uncertainty, and it may be no coincidence that this announcement comes just 24 hours after Dubas was fired.