William Nylander
William Nylander .jpg
Born May 1, 1996 (1996-05-01) (age 23)
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight 190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)
Position Centre
Shoots Right
NHL team (P)
Cur. team
Former teams
Toronto Maple Leafs
Toronto Marlies (AHL)
Modo Hockey
National team Flag of Sweden.svg Sweden
NHL Draft 8th overall, 2014
Toronto Maple Leafs
Playing career 2013–present

William Nylander (born William Andrew Michael Junior Nylander Altelius on May 1, 1996) is a Canadian-born Swedish professional ice hockey player who currently plays for the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League (NHL).

He was selected by the Maple Leafs in the first round (eighth overall) of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.

William is the son of former NHL player Michael Nylander, who played for the Calgary Flames organization and the older brother of Buffalo Sabres prospect Alexander Nylander.

Playing CareerEdit

Early Playing CareerEdit

On February 14, 2013, William made his Allsvenskan debut. Playing alongside his father Michael with Södertälje SK, he earned an assist in his first professional game on a goal by Robert Carlsson.

William closed out his 2013-14 season with a successful 22 game rookie stint in the SHL where he would play as many as 20 minutes a night. Ranked as a top prospect in the 2014 draft, he was selected 8th overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs.

William was highly praised for his offensive talent and puck moving abilities, however criticisms were drawn to his defensive game and small stature, clocking in at 5 foot 9 inches and weighing 169 pounds at the draft combine.

Toronto Maple LeafsEdit

After being drafted 8th overall, the Toronto Maple Leafs announced they had signed William to a three-year entry-level contract (ELC) on August 18, 2014.

William impressed early, scoring a pre-season goal against the Philadelphia Flyers. Later, at the 2015 World Junior Ice Hockey Championship, He finished 5th in tournament scoring, the highest of any player not on Team Canada.

William was reassigned to the Toronto Marlies on January 12, 2015, in order to further his development. He experienced a sensation campaign despite joining the AHL squad mid–season, scoring 32 points in 37 games playing on the right–wing and was vital in helping the Marlies reach the post–season, who were at the bottom of the standings prior to Nylander joining.

Although he left Modo Hockey after 21 games in the 2014–15 SHL season, William was mentioned as a possible candidate for the SHL Rookie of the Year award.

On February 29, 2016, William made his NHL debut against the Tampa Bay Lightning. He scored his first goal on March 5, 2016 against Andrew Hammond of the Ottawa Senators. His first NHL goal was assisted by Brooks Laich, who also assisted William's father Michael in his last NHL goal.

The next season, William made the Maple Leafs roster full-time. He debuted alongside Zach Hyman & Auston Matthews on October 12, 2016 in the season opener against the Ottawa Senators.

William quickly found chemistry with his linemates, helping Matthews set an NHL record for most goals scored in a rookie's debut with four by assisting on two of the goals.

On November 1, 2016, Nylander was named "Rookie of the Month" by NHL for the month of October. He had recorded eleven points in nine games, which was good enough for second in league scoring and first among rookie players.

After his hot start in October, William struggled in November, scoring only 5 points in 13 games. He had a nine-game goalless stretch between October 27th and November 15th. He recovered, scoring twice in three games, but then went on another scoreless stretch, not hitting the twine between November 22nd and December 22nd (lasting for 13 games. He scored in back to back games to end the drought.

After playing consistently with Hyman and Matthews in October, William's streaky, inconsistent play caused him to be shuffled through the lineup in November and December. He even found himself on the 4th line on numerous occasions.

On February 4, 2017, William scored his first NHL career hat trick against the Boston Bruins.

Career StatisticsEdit

Regular season and playoffsEdit

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2010–11 Chicago Mission U16 MWEHL 293427618
2011–12 Södertälje SK J20 81342 40552
2012–13 Södertälje SK Allsv 84262 102134
2012–13 Södertälje SK J20 2715284314 53582
2013–14 Modo Hockey SHL 221676 20000
2013–14 Rögle BK Allsv 1844810
2013–14 Södertälje SK Allsv 17118196
2014–15 Modo Hockey SHL 21812206
2014–15 Toronto Marlies AHL 371418324 5 0 3 3 0
2015–16 Toronto Marlies AHL 38 18 27 45 10 14 7 4 11 2
2015–16 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 22 6 7 13 4
2016–17 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 81 22 39 61 32 6 1 3 4 2
NHL totals 10328467436 61342


Year Team Event Result   GP G A Pts PIM
2013 Sweden WHC17 Template:Goca 6 2 8 10 2
2013 Sweden WJC18 5th 5 2 1 3 2
2013 Sweden IH18 7th 4 4 2 6 4
2014 Sweden WJC18 4th 7 6 10 16 0
2015 Sweden WJC 4th 7 3 7 10 0
2016 Sweden WJC 4th 1 1 0 1 0
Junior totals 23 15 21 36 8

International PlayEdit

Despite being born in Canada, on November 12, 2012, the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) ruled that the Canadian-born William was eligible to represent Sweden in international play.

He went on to compete with Team Sweden at the 2013 World U-17 Hockey Challenge where he scored a tournament high eight assists, leading his team to a gold medal win.

In the 2014 IIHF World U18 Championships, William was the standout player of the tournament, winning the scoring race with 16 points in 7 games.


Awards Year
J20 SuperElit most points by U-18 junior (43) 2012–13
World U-17 Hockey Challenge gold medal with Team Sweden 2013
AHL All-Star Classic 2016

Personal LifeEdit

William was born in Calgary while his father, Michael Nylander, played for the Calgary Flames.

He spent the majority of his youth in the United States where his father played for a multitude of NHL teams, spending the summers in Sweden. His family later moved to Sweden when he was 14 years old.