William Nylander will not play suit up for the Toronto Maple Leafs when they host the Montreal Canadiens due to exposure of a possible positive case of COVID-19, the team announced on Wednesday.
“For precautionary reasons, William Nylander will not play tonight vs Montreal as he has had exposure to a possible positive case with a close contact outside the team” the team announced on their official Twitter account.
“Nylander is isolating and the situation will be re-evaluated tomorrow pending the results of further testing.”
It’s unclear when Nylander was exposed to the possible positive case. He did take part in the team’s morning skate alongside regular linemates Alex Galchenyuk and John Tavares.
Nylander is the first Leafs player to miss a game due coronavirus-related reasons.
Nylander has 13 goals and 17 assists in 39 games this season.
The team says they consulted with the NHL and the game will go ahead as scheduled.
The coronavirus has forced the cancellation of games involving of two of the seven teams in the North Division.
The Vancouver Canucks have been the hardest hit of the two clubs. The team confirmed on Wednesday that 25 individuals have tested positive for COVID-19 and the samples are being tested for variants.
The Canucks have not played for a week and it’s likely more games will be postponed.
Alexander Barabanov will be inserted into the lineup in Nylander’s absence.
Barabanov has no points in 11 games and hasn’t suited up for the Leafs since Mar. 1.