Well with no hockey on the television and the world cup soccer fans occupying every sports bar in Canada, it’s been a tough weekend to get much hockey talk done. Never fear, the draft is coming up in the not too distant future and we’re back with all new prospect profiles this week beginning with William Nylander.
On this fine Monday we’re taking a trip across the pond to break down highly skilled forward William Nylander. Nylander had no issue finding a team to play last season in Sweden as he laced up for Sweden’s U18 team, Sweden’s World Junior team, MODO J18, MODOJ20, MODO, Rogle and Sodertalje all in the same season. Nylander was a busy guy and his skill was on full display for his multiple appearances on the world stage.
He comes in at 5 foot 11 and 183 pounds which is a little small for NHL action, however, as he follows after his fathers footsteps his skill certainly outweighs many worries over his size.
What A Team Will Get If They Draft Him
Possesses top end gears, and lateral agility. Has great hands and could stickhandle in a phone book. Is both a good shooter and passer. Displays a quick release and pin-point passing accuracy. ~ Bill Placzek
William Nylander makes up for his lack of size with his above average hockey sense, hands, and skill. He’s managed to impress in the Swedish elite league, despite playing with men much bigger and older than him. He’s shown a natural hockey knack and tremendous hockey IQ which have served him well against the bigger guys. With his full package of offence, speed and creativity, some consider Nylander to be the most skilled player in the draft.
In addition to his tremendous skill, you’re also going to get a brilliant skater with dazzling speed which is used to burn and fool opponents. He is able to change his speed up at any moment and uses that to his advantage in create shooting and passing lanes as well as beating defenders one-on-one. He can also turn on a dime making him dangerous on both the offencive side of things and the defencive side. Any team that goes after him is going to get a fast, highly skilled, smart and solid play making forward capable of playing a top 6 role.
His Most Underrated Skill
For Nylander, his underrated skill has to be his experience. Despite the fact he’s played a lot of hockey over seas in Sweden, he has played in North America and is used to the physical style of hockey which gives him a leg up on any other European players in the draft who haven’t.
His stick-handling and puck skills are beneficial on the smaller NHL ice rink where there is less room to make mistakes. He’ll need a little time transitioning but is already used to the North American style of hockey he’ll face in the NHL.
What He Needs To Work On
Due to William Nylander’s smaller stature, he could stand to put on some mass and muscle before he suits up in the NHL. He’s playing against much bigger and stronger men in the Swedish elite league and get’s bounced around and roughed up night after night. If he can add a little mass and get better both along the boards and in front of the net he could be a real top 6 forward threat in the NHL.
Fine tune his defencive game and make some smarter choices with the puck which comes from maturity and you’ve got one heck of a prospect in William Nylander.