The Nylander brothers may finally be reunited in Toronto this summer

Nick Matthews
July 8, 2024  (2:54 PM)

Alex Nylander
Photo credit: NHL.com

The Maple Leafs have a roster spot up for grabs with Nick Robertson having requested a trade, but Alex Nylander is still available as a potential replacement.

William Nylander is a fan favourite in Toronto and a superstar in the NHL. Nylander has a ton of flash and flare, and had a coming out party last season as he reach new heights in his career, putting up 98 points.
His brother, Alex Nylander, also had a bit of a coming out party last year. However, it was very different than William's in the sense that he didn't really receive his shot until the end of the season.
Alex Nylander set a career high in goals last season, with 11 goals in 28 games played. Nylander split time with the Pittsburgh Penguins and Columbus Blue Jackets last season, but his 11 goals all came with the Blue Jackets, in just 23 GP.
It was a bit of a head-scratcher as to why the Blue Jackets chose not to re-sign Nylander, as it finally looked like he found a great fit in Columbus. Nevertheless, with the younger Nylander still available on the UFA market, there's still a chance we could see the management group in Toronto roll the two Nylander brothers, not only on the same team next season, but potentially on the same line.
This would not just be a fun media play by the Maple Leafs, but a strategic low-risk pick up, that could help provide some additional depth scoring. If the Maple Leafs persue younger brother Alex with a league minimum deal, they could then ship off disgruntled RFA forward Nick Robertson, for a draft picks or a prospect of a similar age and skill level.
The Nylander brothers could play on a line together with Leafs captain John Tavares in the top 6, but as we've seen in the past, the Leafs also haven't shied away from playing Nylander on the 3rd line in an attempt to create matchup issues for the opposition.
Whether the Leafs were to deploy the brothers in a 3rd line role or a 2nd line role, it would be an exciting proposition and one that could yield some positive results for the Leafs. Obviously, with Alex also being Willy's best friend in the world, I'm sure the pair would have a strong desire to play on a line together in the NHL.
Source for stats: NHL.com
Alex Nylander Statistics
The Nylander brothers may finally be reunited in Toronto this summer

Should the Leafs peruse UFA forward Alex Nylander as a depth winger?

Yes59569 %
No17620.4 %
No more reclamation projects!9110.6 %
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