Maple Leafs sign William Nylander to six-year deal

LIVE UPDATES: William Nylander contract signing watch

William Nylander ends contract standoff with Maple Leafs, reaches new six-year deal

Whether or not that's actually the case will become clear before the team takes the ice Saturday night.

The 22-year-old Nylander, who missed the first 26 games of the Leafs' season, would have had to sit out the entire campaign if he and the National Hockey League team were unable to agree on a deal by Saturday.

Regardless, Nylander's $6.96M cap hit will make it hard to sign the collection of Toronto Maple Leafs players that are due for extensions at the end of this year, including Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, Kasperi Kapanen, and Jake Gardiner. "He's going to make us better". We think he's going to be a career Leaf. "That's what we believe".

William Nylander's contract impasse with the Toronto Maple Leafs has ended.

Michael Peca was the last NHLer to do that as a restricted free agent when he couldn't come to terms with the Buffalo Sabres during the 2000-01 campaign, but there was no December 1 deadline hanging over his head.

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However, if Nylander s regresses, the Toronto Maple Leafs are likely to flip him for a high yield of assets and use the $6.96M in cap space to re-sign Jake Gardiner and others. "I can imagine what he's going through". "I know I wouldn't have the patience for that kind of thing myself, so it's good they were able to do it. Willy was ecstatic after". "When we play a game like that, that's just not going to happen again".

"We always tried to stay optimistic", said Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas.

With that being said, the Toronto Maple Leafs have left themselves the flexibility to keep Nylander if he plays very well.

NOTES: Toronto F Mitchell Marner had two assists to bring his season total to 32 - a Toronto record for the most assists through 27 games. It's nice to have him back, for sure.

Nylander has been a consistent scorer at every level.

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The Calgary-born Swede has 48 goals and 87 assists for 135 points in 185 career games.

Toronto's players found out the news before the game when Babcock emerged from his office to tell them Nylander had signed.

But Kasperi Kapanen, one of Nylander's good friends, occupied the right side on that unit for most of the early part of the schedule until Matthews suffered that shoulder injury on October 27.

Nylander also had a 20 +/- and 10 PIM during the 2017-18 season.

"We're not just three, four guys risky", Tavares said of the Leafs' depth. "None of those have really gone against us so far". On July 1, 2019 Nylander will receive an $8.3M signing bonus. Forward Mitchell Marner said the players in the locker room immediately grabbed their phones upon hearing the news. Hopefully he gets us on a run here, get in a couple practices. He's a big part of this team.

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Heyman isn't the first to say this either, as there were rumblings about Corbin making a quick decision over the weekend as well. The 29 year-old lefthander is coming off a season in which he went 11-7 with a career low 3.15 ERA (70 ER/200 IP) and 1.05 WHIP.

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