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Maple Leafs’ Quick Hits: Dubas, McMann, and Nylander

The Toronto Maple Leafs are between general managers, yet there’s news emerging. What about Kyle Dubas, Bobby McMann, and William Nylander?

In this edition of Toronto Maple Leafs’ Quick Hits, I’ll take a look at a variety of topics surrounding the team. First, I’ll discuss why former Maple Leafs’ general manager (GM) Kyle Dubas might be a good fit in Pittsburgh with the Penguins. Second, I’ll take a look at Bobby McMann and his potential as a regular-season roster player for the Maple Leafs. Finally, I’ll continue on a topic I wrote about a couple of days ago. That’s the productivity of William Nylander.

Related: Maple Leafs News & Rumors: Dubas’ Blame, McMann & Tkachuk

Quick Hit One: Why Is Kyle Dubas Such a Good Fit in Pittsburgh?

Ex-Maple Leafs’ GM Kyle Dubas is seen as a strong candidate for the Pittsburgh Penguins for a couple of specific reasons. Here’s a quick list: (1) he uses an analytics-driven approach and expertise, (2) he’s had some success in developing young talent, (3) he aligns with the Pengiuns’ style of play, (4) he’s innovative in his thinking, and (5) he’s had experience in a high-pressure market like Toronto.

These factors make him potentially a good fit for the Penguins. The ownership there values analytics, player development, and a fast-paced, skill-oriented style of hockey. Dubas’ adaptability and experience with intense media scrutiny also prepare him for the expectations and challenges of a hockey market like Pittsburgh.

In fact, Pittsburgh is one of the smallest cities in the NHL with a population of approximately 299,500 (as of the 2020 census). While Toronto is one of the largest with a population of approximately 2.93 million (as of the 2021 census).

Quick Hit Two: Looking Forward to Bobby McMann Sorting Out His Potential

I admit that I’m looking forward to several Maple Leafs’ prospects getting a chance with the big club next season. Specifically, I hope that Nick Robertson can stay healthy. I also want to see if Matthew Knies can leverage his solid postseason into a top-six role with the team coming out of training camp. As well, Pontus Holmberg looked good to me during the regular season. I want to see more of him.

However, Bobby McMann emerges for me as an intriguing prospect for the Maple Leafs’ regular-season roster. In part, he grew up in rural Alberta and I know his hometown of Wainwright quite well. Despite not yet scoring his first NHL goal, McMahon has shown promise and potential.

As an undrafted young player, his skills and dedication make him a valuable asset to the team. McMann persevered and earned a call-up to the NHL after impressing in the AHL. His physicality, two-way game, and work ethic have made an impact on those who watch him play. He plays with energy, defensive prowess, and the ability to generate scoring chances.

I believe McMann has a chance this coming season. How far will his star rise in the world of hockey?

Related: As Maple Leafs Fans, Are We Sure Dubas Traded Nazem Kadri?

Quick Hit Three: Is William Nylander the Most Productive of the Core Four?

Maple Leafs’ fans know that William Nylander is a reliable playoff scorer for the Maple Leafs. However, few fans (including me) knew how favourably he compared to Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner in terms of production. What sets Nylander apart is his ability to maintain his performance throughout the entire season – including the postseason in high-pressure games.

Unlike Matthews and Marner, who’ve experienced a decline in production in the postseason, Nylander shows improvement. One aspect of his consistent performance could be attributed to his indifference towards criticism. He simply doesn’t seem to be fazed by any pressure from the media or the fans. That allows him to remain focused and unaffected on the ice.

William Nylander, Maple Leafs

Despite receiving less ice time than Matthews or Marner, Nylander’s points per 60 minutes often are higher than his counterparts. And this happens even when he regularly receives less favourable ice time. His chances of success, given his limited opportunities to contribute, further suggest his value. Specifically, if the first unit line is “loaded up,” it’s usually with Matthews, Marner, and John Tavares – not Nylander.

Nylander also brings a diverse offensive skill set that helps make the Maple Leafs’ offence unpredictable. Nylander’s passing skills and his threat as a shooter can confuse opponents who are trying to defend him. He is a smooth skater, especially in transition, which allows him to move the puck effectively and create scoring chances.

I hope the Maple Leafs’ new GM doesn’t trade him. He’d be missed by fans and his team alike.

Related: Five Moves the Maple Leafs Must Make: And Now!

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Roy Peters

    May 28, 2023 at 8:42 pm

    I agree that MLSE impacted decisions the leafs to the detriment they were not interested in anything other then the bottom line, when you have financial institutions as shareholders then you have no value other then money. The owners should realize with even one cup win there money will double Dubas walked and any person with integrity should also walk away. The Leafs should be owned by one person if they want a cup I have been a fan for over 60 years and am nearing the end need to see a cup.

  2. Vince

    May 29, 2023 at 4:33 pm

    Anyone can see that Matthews and tavaras are just good players without Marner. Nylander gets to float around and pick his moment. What a great job. Need someone from Boston to be GM so we can get real hockey players who want to win a Stanley cup. Paying kids too much money up front will never result in the cup

  3. Pingback: Maple Leafs' Offseason: 4 Priorities the Team Must Engage

  4. gfinale

    May 30, 2023 at 8:30 am

    If Dubas is even entertaining thoughts of going to any club anytime soon, it makes him a slime bag. It would mean he lied to millions of people on tv including his company, team, players and fans and he used and lied about his family. Why then would any credible organization want anything to do with him?!

    • gfinale

      May 30, 2023 at 9:24 am

      Good comment and agreed!

  5. gfinale

    May 30, 2023 at 9:21 am

    Yes and no on Nylander. He disappears when the going gets tougher like the rest of this core. 103% is not much improvement but I will concede that at least his average points during playoffs don’t diminish as they do with the others.

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