On the Clock: William Nylander
ISS Ranking: 5
Weight: 176 lbs
In a nutshell
The Calgary, Alberta-born, but currently living in Sweden, Nylander is a dynamic offensive player with good speed, good vision, good hands, and a quick, accurate shot. He was born in Calgary while his father, Michael, was playing for the Flames. His dad registered 679 points (209-470-679) in 920 career NHL games. William is committed to play for Modo in the Swedish Hockey League next season.
Been there, done that
Led all players at the 2014 World Under-18 Championships with 16 points (6-10-16) in seven games, en route to being named tournament MVP. He had six points (4-2-6) in four games at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka, and finished second in scoring at the 2013 World Under-17 Challenge with 10 points (2-8-10) in six games while winning the gold medal.
Tough to find a good NHL comparison for Nylander. When he has the puck on his stick, he reminds a lot of people of Patrick Kane. His skating has been compared to former NHL player, Sami Kapanen, who could really fly.
Word on the street
“William boasts high-end skills highlighted by excellent puck control. His confidence with the puck is outstanding and he has as much patience with it as any player in the draft.” – TSN’s Craig Button (Jan. 23, 2014)
Good fit in Vancouver?
Nylander is a bit of a risky pick, but the payoff could be huge. His poor defensive game raises a lot of question marks, but when he has the puck on his stick, look out. He isn’t the biggest guy in the world, but if he can develop his overall game and add some weight, he may end up having a great NHL career. His stock really rose after the Under-18s, which was missing a lot of top-end talent due to the CHL Playoffs. High risk, high reward pick that could go literally go anywhere in the Top 15.