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Toronto Maple Leafs

Nylander Clarifies Injury Rumors as Game 1 Status Still Uncertain

William Nylander has clarified injury rumors ahead of Game 1 between the Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins. Nylander’s status is still uncertain.

As injury rumors circulate, it’s unclear if William Nylander will play for the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 1 on Saturday night. He’s dealing with a “tweak” according to TSN hockey insider Darren Dreger. That’s about all anyone from the organization will reveal. What Nylander did want to clarify is that he didn’t suffer the injury before the final game of the season. Also, he didn’t play on it after hurting himself against the Tampa Bay Lighting in a quest to reach 100 points on the season.

Nylander and the Maple Leafs started taking a bit of heat on Friday when it was learned that the forward was not at practice but was at the arena. Ruling out the likelihood he had some sort of flu bug, the only other option was an injury. However, head coach Sheldon Keefe wouldn’t reveal the status of his player, in part because he was told not to by his GM Brad Treliving.

William Nylander Maple Leafs

Related: William Nylander a Maybe For Maple Leafs Opening Playoff Game

Without much information to go on, the media started to run with the idea that perhaps Nylander had a minor injury that he potentially played on in the final game of the season when he should have been resting. Bryan Hayes of TSN called it a potential case of malpractice and said, “If it comes out that he’s fighting through something, that’s a disaster.”

It wouldn’t just be a disaster because the Leafs would be without Nylander — although that would be bad. Instead, it’s a terrible look to let a player go out there in a relatively meaningless game on an injury. This is especially true if it was just so the player could reach 100 points or help someone like Auston Matthews hit 70 goals.

Not the Way the Maple Leafs Wanted to Start the Playoffs

With a series coming up that the Leafs have a history of struggling in and against an opponent they can rarely, if ever beat, this Nylander news is not ideal. Both from a player and personnel standpoint and an optics position, this is not how the organization wanted to go into this series.

Already down Bobby McMann, if Nylander is out too, that’s some serious firepower out of the lineup for the Maple Leafs. Even if Nylander can go, if he’s not healthy, that’s a serious setback.

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