Former NHLer and current analyst identifies the Leafs' best trade partner in a Nylander deal

Ryan Smitheram
August 22, 2023  (8:45)

As we get closer and closer to training camp, it would appear that William Nylander and the Leafs will remain at a stalemate and Nylander will enter and likely play this season without a contract extension. The Leafs would like to sign him for somewhere between $8M and $9M while Nylander is holding firm at an AAV of $10M+ per season. The gap at this point is much too large for a deal to be completed quickly which means this is likely Nylander's last season in the blue and white.

On the NHL Network last night, former NHLer and current analyst Mike Rupp said that Nylander would and could thrive on a Western Conference team with the opportunity to "be the guy".
"I think it's coming to an end," said Rupp of Nylander's time in Toronto. "At some point this season, I think you'll see Nylander moved. He's one of the most underpaid players in the NHL... He's not hidden anymore, he had 40 goals last year... I'd love to see him to get the opportunity to be the man somewhere and I wanna see what that does for him. A team that would be the perfect fit... I look to Anaheim. They have a boatload of young talent and the Leafs have been a very good team and haven't picked overly high in the draft."
Rupp believes that the Leafs would be able to use Nylander to acquire very good assets in a trade with Anaheim. Obviously the Ducks would not be parting with the likes of Trevor Zegras and Troy Terry, but they do have a number of young players that could fit into the Leafs' lineup right away in Mason McTavish, Max Jones, Colton White and Jamie Drysdale. Additionally, they have 6 picks in the first three rounds of the upcoming draft. The Ducks also have $16M in cap space right now, but that is with Drysdale and Zegras unsigned, so they would have to move some money out to fit Nylander in long-term so the Leafs could end up with a very good roster player should they make a deal with the Ducks.
As we get closer to training camp with no end in sight to the stalemate between the Leafs and Nylander, we might just see Nylander shipped out sooner than later to avoid his contract becoming a distraction for him and the team for the entire season.
22 AOUT   |   556 ANSWERS
Former NHLer and current analyst identifies the Leafs' best trade partner in a Nylander deal

Are the Ducks the best trade partner in the NHL when it comes to Nylander and the Leafs?

Yes20436.7 %
No10819.4 %
Depends what they're willing to part with24443.9 %
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