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Maple Leafs prospect William Nylander to join Sweden at world juniors @NHL

TORONTO - William Nylander was given permission by the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday to play for Sweden at the world junior hockey championship.

Nylander is considered one of the top prospects in the Maple Leafs farm system.

He was selected eighth overall by Toronto in the 2014 NHL draft.

The 19 year old has 14 goals and 19 assists for the American Hockey League's Toronto Marlies in 25 games with a plus-7 rating.

Although he was born in Calgary, Nylander plays for Sweden because his father Michael Nylander ? a former NHLer ? is a Swedish citizen. The younger Nylander also began his professional career in Sweden.

Nylander will join Sweden on Saturday after playing road games with the Marlies on Wednesday and Friday.

Sweden will play Canada in a pre-competition exhibition game on Dec. 23 as both teams prepare for the world junior hockey championships in Helsinki, Finland.

They'll meet again on Dec. 31 in the preliminary round of the international event.

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