Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe calls out William Nylander

Is Nylander deserving of this?



The Toronto Maple Leafs currently sit in 2nd place in the Atlantic Division, and they have the absolutely torrid scoring pace of superstar forward Auston Matthews to thank in large part for their success. 

Matthews is on pace to eclipse the 70-goal mark for what would be the first time in his career, and continues to demonstrate that he deserves to be included in the elite of the elite category of goal scorers. However, one player who enjoyed a hot start to the year but has cooled a bit is Swedish forward William Nylander, who also happens to be a pending unrestricted free agent.

Not long after Toronto's recent 4-1 triumph over the Columbus Blue Jackets, Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe appeared to deliver a shot at Nylander. 

"Probably the biggest thing is that we are coming off a couple of losses here," Keefe said. "Despite the fact that Matthews has been scoring consistently, I don't know if I would say Willy has been a huge contributor to those goals. I believe that Auston could still continue to be Auston and work well no matter who we have him with."

His comments came on the heels of Nylander having tallied three points in the win over Columbus, leaving many fans feeling a bit confused as to the true motivation behind the message. 

Regardless of how this season turns out for Nylander and the Leafs, what are the realistic chances that he is able to agree to a team-friendly contract extension that not only keeps him in Toronto long term but also doesn't hamstring them financially?

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