PHILADELPHIA – One year ago at the NHL draft in Newark, the Maple Leafs picked Frederik Gauthier with their first selection, a h
PHILADELPHIA – One year ago at the NHL draft in Newark, the Maple Leafs picked Frederik Gauthier with their first selection, a hin
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PHILADELPHIA – One year ago at the NHL draft in Newark, the Maple Leafs picked Frederik Gauthier with their first selection, a hulking centre with likely third-line potential and a low offensive ceiling. Trevor Siemian Vikings Jersey . They swung for a much higher fence with the eighth overall pick on Friday night, landing the "electrifying" William Nylander from Sweden. A speedy, highlight-reel winger, he is the son of longtime NHL centre Michael Nylander and the first European Toronto has drafted in the first round since Jiri Tlusty in 2006. Nylander is also the first draft pick of the Brendan Shanahan era and an injection of homegrown game-breaking ability, long-starved within the Leaf organization. "Hes got high, high-end skill," gushed general manager Dave Nonis, shortly after the pick was made. And that fills a need within the prospect ranks of the organization, considerably deprived over the years. Though hopeful that the likes of Carter Verhaeghe, Connor Brown and Andreas Johnson may eventually make an impact of sorts with the big club, the Leafs simply did not boast a game-breaker with Nylanders ceiling beyond the NHL club (and have not historically). They havent landed many at all from the draft. Vincent Damphousse, picked sixth overall in 1986, was the last homegrown player to register at least 80 points in a season as a Leaf. Toronto has, additionally, sent only two homegrown players to the All-Star game in the past 20 years, neither of whom was a forward (Tomas Kaberle and Felix Potvin). Dealing first round picks – as they did five times from 2003-2011 – certainly didnt help the matter. Nylander may or may not make it, but he, at the very least, represents the kind of high upside, homegrown talent the organization has mostly lacked, especially up front – Nazem Kadri, who scored 20 goals as a 23-year-old last season, was a recent exception. Nonis wouldnt go as far as to say that adding skill was a priority, but labeled it "an area of weakness". "He might be the most skilled player in the draft," said the Leafs GM of Nylander. Nonis saw that skill firsthand at the Under-18 tournament in Finland this past April. Nylander, playing for Sweden, led all players with 16 points in seven games, notching six goals along the way. As a teenager, he spent part of last season in Swedens top league, totaling a goal and seven points in 22 games – notable given his age and size (5-foot-11, 169 pounds). "He has NHL speed, NHL hands, an NHL shot right now," Nonis said. "Its whether or not the rest of his game can catch up." Unwilling to pay Dale Tallons price for the first overall pick and rights to draft Aaron Ekblad, Nonis said he actually considered moving down if one of two players – Nylander among them – wasnt there to be had with the eighth pick. Nylander grew up around the NHL, his father totaling 920 NHL games for seven different teams. That kept the younger Nylander in North America until the age of 14 when he moved to Sweden, eventually playing alongside his 40-year-old dad last year (with Rogle in the second-tier league). "I like to score goals and make plays," Nylander said, projecting an aura of confidence and cool, noticeably unfazed by all that surrounded him. A free agent and thus able to come to North America next year if he and the organization so choose, Nylander will audition for the Leafs in the fall. "Hell definitely have a chance to make our team," Nonis said. "[But] I really dont care how skilled you are, its very difficult to make the NHL as an 18-year-old. I think itd be a long shot for him to do that, but hes going to be given that opportunity and if hes good enough to stick and play and contribute then we would keep him. If not, well decide at that point whether its best to keep him over in North America or to have him go back to Sweden to play in the Elite League." Nylander boasts a "VERY high ceiling" according to Mark Seidel, chief scout for North American Central Scouting, but has been trailed by attitude questions, something Nonis brushed aside as outward confidence. Like most draftees, the new Leaf prospect will have to get bigger and stronger before he is likely to make the leap to the NHL, additionally requiring some acclimation to the North American ice surface. "It may take him a month to acclimate, it might take him over a year – I dont know that," said Nonis. "But the skill-set is very high end." Daniel Carlson Jersey . -- DeMarcus Cousins had 25 points and 16 rebounds to help the Sacramento Kings snap a seven-game losing streak by defeating the Chicago Bulls 99-70 on Monday night. Mike Hughes Jersey . Belfort was originally schedule to fight Chris Weidman at UFC 173 on May 24, but a Nevada State Athletic Commission ban on testosterone replacement therapy forced the former light heavyweight champ to withdraw. http://www.vikingsteamofficial.com/kirk-cousins-jersey/ . -- Andy Granatelli, the former CEO of STP motor oil company who made a mark on motorsports as a car owner, innovator and entrepreneur, has died.NEW YORK -- Washington Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann was scratched from his scheduled start against the New York Mets on Thursday because of flu-like symptoms. Tanner Roark took over as the starting pitcher for the finale of the opening three-game series. He had been slated to start Washingtons home opener Friday against the Atlanta Braves. Nationals manager Matt Williams said Zimmermann was being sent back to Washington ahead of the team and being given fluids. He said the pitcher, who went 19-9 with a 3.25 ERA last year, was feeling fine Wednesday but took ill after the game. "Hes running a fever. He was up all night throwing up," Williams said. "Evidently hes feeling pretty under the weather." Roark, a 27-year-old right-hander, was 7-1 witth a 1. Mike Remmers Vikings Jersey. 1 ERA in five starts and nine relief appearances as a rookie last year, striking out 40 and walking 11 in 53 2-3 innings. He was informed of the change in plans during a phone call Thursday morning from pitching coach Steve McCatty. Williams hopes Taylor Jordan is ready to pitch Friday on short rest. While his last exhibition appearance was March 24, he threw a simulated outing this week and would be starting on short rest. Washingtons second option would be a series of relievers. "If hes not ready to go tomorrow, then thats going to have to be our option," Williams said. NOTES: RHP Doug Fister, sidelined by a strained muscle on the right side of his upper back, was scheduled to play catch. Fister can be activated April 7. Wholesale NFL T-shirts Cheap Jerseys Free Shipping NFL Jerseys Wholesale China NFL Gear Wholesale NFL Camo Jerseys Cheap NFL Hoodies Camo China NFL Jerseys ' ' '