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NHL Draft Profile: William Nylander

by Brad Friedman / Columbus Blue Jackets

A smooth puck-handler with great vision and a sudden burst of speed, William Nylander is a dynamic player and would qualify as a "game breaker."

He's the ideal combination that coaches and scouts look for: a dual threat to shoot the puck or make a play, and is always in position to be unpredictable when the puck's on his stick. His passing ability is one part of his game that can get better, but he's also not afraid to call his own number and make something out of nothing. 

Those offensive skills caught the eye of several Swedish clubs, and Nylander has suited up for three different squads over the past few seasons. Sӧdertӓje, Modo and Rӧgle have all called upon Nylander to add an offensive boost both and he hasn't disappointed.

In 116 games with the three organizations, Nylander lit the lamp 48 times while adding 64 assists - nearly a point-per-game pace as a teenager playing in a professional league.

Nylander has compiled a long resume in international competition, including a gold medal with his U-17 squad and was named “best forward” when he suited up for Sweden's U18 team. Nylander scored eight goals and racked up 11 assists in the 2014 U18 tournament, as well.

Here’s what Radoslav Vavrina of Hockey’s Future had to say about Nylander:

"Nylander showed off his abilities often and well at this year's Ivan Hlinka. He's an offensive weapon and has a great shot, fast skating ability, and smooth hands. He is also great on the forecheck, but should work on his defensive play and pass the puck more often. Ranked by many in the top-three for the upcoming draft, Nylander seems to be a true generational talent although there is still a lot of work for him to do."

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