At noon ET today unsigned Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander officially set an NHL record for the longest contract holdout during the salary cap era.
Nylander officially made history today by becoming longest RFA holdout since the NHL instituted its salary cap system back in 2005. Nashville Predators forward Kyle Turris previously held the longest period after missing 47 days and 19 games with then then Phoenix Coyotes, now Arizona Coyotes, during the 2011-12 season. Turris eventually signed a two year, $2.8 million deal with the Coyotes, but played just six more games with the team before he was shipped off to the Ottawa Senators in December of 2011.
So, while 12pm ET may be the official date that Nylander surpassed Turris in his contract standoff, the truth is that he had already surpassed him nearly a week ago. Nylander has already missed an astounding 51 days and 22 games this season.
With the NHL’s Dec 1st deadline to sign RFA’s for eligibility in the 2018-19 season just over a week away, both Nylander and Leafs GM Kyle Dubas are getting into crunch time to make a deal. Sign and play? Sign and trade? Trade and sign? Or Sit? It’ll be interesting to see how this saga finally gets resolved.