The deadline to sign William Nylander is quickly approaching. If he hasn’t inked a deal by Dec. 1, he can’t play in the NHL this season.
When asked how he feels about how the season has gone at the quarter point, Mike Babcock said he was ecstatic. The Leafs are 15-7-0 and sit towards the top of the NHL standings. It’s going to be a dogfight in the Atlantic Division with the Cup-contending Lightning and the suddenly-good Sabres, so the Leafs needed a hot start to the season. There really isn’t much margin for error here to ensure home ice advantage in the playoffs.
Mike Babcock, on how he feels about #leafs at U.S. Thanksgiving: “Obviously ecstatic. Any way you look at it we’ve got off to a good start. We think our team’s going to be better, we have significant pieces not here and they will be here."
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) November 22, 2018
The most important part of this quote, though, is this…
We have significant pieces not here and they will be here.
Obviously, part of that alludes to Auston Matthews who has missed a chunk of the season due to injury. But notice how he says “pieces.” That obviously alludes to Nylander. Babcock isn’t the general manager of the team, but he certainly knows what’s going on upstairs. If he’s confident Nylander is going to be with the team this season, there’s reason to believe him.
The clock is ticking, but this is some of the first good news we’ve had in a while.