There are reports that the New York Islanders and LA Kings are actively pursuing Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander.
If the Toronto Maple Leafs are going to trade Nylander, do the Islanders or Kings really have what it takes to get the deal done?
According to Hockeybuzz, here’s the latest on Nylander:
"“The Leafs have been hesitant to listen to trade offers for their most consistent forward, however from what I am told the offers are “finally getting somewhere in the ballpark.” I keep hearing the Kings and Islanders as the two most actively pursuing Willie…”"
This is a pretty generic report, but it would make a lot of sense that both of those teams would be interested in Nylander. I mean, every team in the league should be interested in a 40 goal, point-per-game forward who’s on a cheap contract this season, but specifically those two teams make a lot of sense.
Toronto Maple Leafs: Commenting on the Latest Nylander Rumours
The Islanders have the seventh worst goals per game average this season and are desperate need for a superstar (sorry, Bo Horvat and Matt Barzal), while the Kings are a legitimate Stanley Cup contender.
With a 15-4-3 record, the Kings are one of the best teams in the Western Conference. They’re second in goals for and first in goals against, so offensively and defensively, they’re clicking. However, the one area they’re lacking is their power-play, as they’re only 19th in the NHL in that category.
As a result, they could use another goal-scorer to help them on the power-play and there’s no better option than Nylander right now.
Could Nylander Be Headed to LA or New York?
LA and New York may be interested, but what’s a realistic offer they’d give Toronto to get Nylander? How does the money work and would Toronto really give him up?
Here’s two hypothetical trades that could get the ball rolling:
Hypothetical Trade No. 1:
- Toronto Maple Leafs acquire: Matt Roy and Quinton Byfield
- LA Kings acquire: William Nylander
If the Leafs are going to give up Nylander, they’re going to need a defenseman and a young forward/draft pick and this trade accomplishes this. Roy is a top-four defenseman, but the Kings are so good down the middle of the ice that they’d be willing to give up Roy for a 40-goal scorer.
Byfield is probably a deal-breaker for the Kings, but they’re in win-now mode. Byfield could be a top winger for the next decade, but so is Nylander, so would they rather have a proven commodity in Nylander or someone who’s still developing?
This is probably too much for the Kings to offer but this trade can make both parties very happy.
Hypothetical Trade No. 2:
- Toronto Maple Leafs acquire: Ryan Pulock and Samuel Bolduc
- New York Islanders acquire: William Nylander
As previously mentioned, the Leafs need a defenseman back if they trade Nylander, so instead of one, why not ask for two?
Bolduc is a rookie defenseman with a ton of potential, while Pulock is a legitimate top-four defenseman who would make this team much better defensively. Both defenseman have legitimate size, so they’d make the Leafs a much harder team to play against and would be staple’s on the blue-line for year’s to come.
Lou Lamoriello would probably only be willing to give up one of these defenseman in a trade, but they desperately need goal-scoring, so it’s possible they’d sacrifice their blue-line for much needed offense.
Either way, it’s going to take a big offer for the Leafs to actually trade Nylander before the deadline.