Skip to content
TSN analyst believes Leafs would be right to release William Nylander in 2024

Auston Matthews and William Nylander are still giving new Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brad Treliving headaches. While it’s debatable whether the organization should pay Auston Matthews $14 million a year beyond the 2023-2024 season, it’s hard to justify putting $10 million a year into William Nylander’s account.

So what’s Toronto’s solution in the case of the Swede? That’s a lot of money for the fourth wheel among forwards. Should we trade his services so as not to lose him on the free agent market in 2024?

TSN analyst Bryan Hayes believes that the Maple Leafs should simply release Nylander at the end of next season, if they are not satisfied with the amount offered. He says the team must first keep its end of the bargain.

“If he wants to make $10 million and the Leafs don’t want to, they shouldn’t give up until the end of next season. If he quits, he quits. We’ve needed this team to have confidence in its program for a long time. […] The Leafs need to pick a number, and if he doesn’t like it, too bad!”

-Bryan Hayes

Hayes even talks about confidence, internally, suggesting that the team may have lacked conviction in allowing themselves to be pounded on the feet by their players.

He also explains his thoughts on the idea of letting him leave without getting anything in return. In short, it’s important to understand that the space under the payroll is important, as such, on the eve of a cap increase.

“It’s a salary cap system. If he leaves, it’s not ideal. But if he leaves after a great season and they do something in the playoffs, so be it. They’ve gotten a lot of value out of William Nylander, since he came to Toronto, and either way, his amount will be free on the payroll in 2024.”

-Bryan Hayes

None of this is to say, of course, that he shouldn’t be traded if a perfect deal comes to the table. But if that deal jeopardizes the team’s chances in 2024, it wouldn’t be catastrophic to release him at the end of the season.

In a gust

– Don’t expect him to break everything.

– Expensive, a little.

– Of note.

More Content