Where the William Nylander contract stalemate will end up is anyone’s guess, but the Carolina Hurricanes seem to be a team to watch if the Leafs ever decide to deal him.
Pierre LeBrun has reported numerous times in recent weeks that general manager Kyle Dubas has been telling teams he’s not interested in trading Nylander, but teams are still doing their due diligence just in case.
“Are they ever,” remarked LeBrun on Tuesday’s edition of TSN’s Insider Trading. “Even as of today, I had two other teams tell me that, again, their understanding from the Leafs is that Kyle Dubas does not want to move Nylander.
“But as we get closer to December 1, when Nylander - if he remains unsigned - can no longer play in the NHL this season, that’s an asset that the Leafs have to make a decision on. And maybe the Leafs change their stance, and that’s where teams are hoping to act.
“Carolina, to me, is a team you’ve got to keep an eye on because of the teams that I think have interest in Nylander, the Hurricanes are as deep on defense as any of those teams. I think they have five Top-4 defensemen. And I guy that I think the Leafs would have interest in, if it ever goes down this road - lots of ifs - would be Brett Pesce, who has a six-year deal at just over $4 million a year, a cap-friendly deal, and is a young, Top-4 defenseman.”
Pesce’s contract, which was signed in August, carries a cap hit of $4.025 million.
Nylander is a restricted free agent coming out of his entry-level contract.
Contract-related info via CapFriendly