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LONDON, Ont. - This is just the warm-up act for 18-year-old William Nylander. For the Maple Leafs top prospect, the player they selected with the eighth overall pick this past June, this weekends rookie tournament in London is simply the test run before his first NHL training camp gets underway next week. A long-shot to make the leap as a teenager, the slyly confident Nylander doesnt intend to temper his expectations. "My goals are always as high as possible," he said on the eve of the tournament. "Biggest goal is to try to take a spot on the NHL team." Toronto holds three options when it comes to the immediate future of Nylander, the first European prospect the team has picked with its first round pick since 2006; they can keep him in the NHL with the Leafs (delaying the decision for as many as nine games before a year of his entry-level contract kicks in); they can let him return to the Swedish Hockey League where he is a free agent; or they can assign him to the Marlies. Of the three, earning a spot with the NHL club would seem the least likely. "Hell definitely have a chance to make our team," general manager Dave Nonis said shortly after Nylander was selected at the 2014 draft in Philadelphia. "[But] I really dont care how skilled you are, its very difficult to make the NHL as an 18-year-old." Not only that, but the Leafs are loaded with depth at the forward position (nearly all of whom require waivers), adding the likes of Mike Santorelli, David Booth, Daniel Winnik, Leo Komarov, Petri Kontiola and Matt Frattin in the offseason. That leaves little room for Nylander to nudge his way into the lineup for head coach Randy Carlyle, who is under immense pressure to change fortunes after another late season collapse and is thus unlikely to lay his bets on an untested rookie. Even a jaw-dropping preseason might not be enough. Picked seventh overall in the 2009 draft, Nazem Kadri dazzled in his first exhibition roundabout later that fall, amassing three goals and five points in six preseason games before being promptly returned to the junior ranks in London. "Nazem is going to be a superstar in this league – we honestly believe that," then-Leafs head coach Ron Wilson said at the time. "We want him to go back to the OHL and absolutely dominate the league there." Nylander wont be going to junior. Though he was selected by the Mississauga Steelheads with the 13th pick in the CHL import draft, the Calgary-born Nylander made clear Friday that such a route is not in his plans. The Leafs, for their part, intend to take a wait-and-see approach with their top prospect, gauging where his development is best served at training camp - which begins in Toronto on Thursday. As was eventually demonstrated with Kadri - who spent parts of three seasons in the AHL - patience and prudence is probably their best course, leaving the Marlies or Swedish League as the two likeliest options. Like their current No. 2 centre, Nylanders skill-set isnt really in question. Nonis described him as boasting "NHL speed, NHL hands, an NHL shot right now," wondering "whether or not the rest of his game can catch up." That would include his physical frame, noticeably slight at 5-foot-9 and 170 pounds, and thus unlikely to be ready for the nightly tests of Zdeno Chara and Shea Weber (Nylander spent 22 games in the Swedish Hockey League as a 17-year-old last season, mustering a single goal and seven points). Nylander must also quickly readjust to the North American sized rink, having spent his formative years playing on the bigger ice in Sweden, and then subsequently learn the finer details of the NHL game (a lengthy process for any young player). "His skill probably speaks for itself and that might separate him from other guys out there," said Marlies coach Gord Dineen. "But theres the culture shock of coming over to North America, playing in a different rink … Well see how it goes. I think everybody has to be patient." The rookie tournament has proven a springboard of sorts in the past for a handful of Leaf prospects. Viktor Stalberg, Jake Gardiner and Morgan Rielly most recently, were among those that separated themselves from the competition at the event before doing the same at NHL training camp - all three, however, were older than Nylander, who turned 18 in May. Like Rielly a year ago, Nylander may play in only one of the three exhibition tilts - he is scheduled to suit up in the tournament opener against Chicago on Saturday. "Hes going to be a guy that gets a good look at the Leaf camp," said Dineen. "We know his capabilities. Our scouts and management know his capabilities so this is the opportunity for him to just get a game or two under his belt before the main camp." "Its a big step to the NHL," Nylander said. "Going to give it all Ive got." Ivan Nova Jersey . - Robert Griffin III has a sprained throwing shoulder that limited him in practice Wednesday as the Washington Redskins prepared for their season finale against the Dallas Cowboys. Pittsburgh Pirates Jerseys . Browns owner Jimmy Haslam announced the move with Young on Monday during a speech at a Pro Football Hall of Fame luncheon. http://www.piratesrookiestore.com/Pirate...ki-Kids-Jersey/. The Blue Jackets announced the injury through their official Twitter account Friday afternoon. Gaborik, 31, has scored five goals and six assists in 17 games with the Blue Jackets in 2013-14. Colin Moran Jersey . The Toronto Maple Leafs forward and Nashville Predators goaltender highlighted Mondays waiver transactions, with Calgarys Chuck Kobasew and Edmontons Philip Larsen also being placed on waivers. David Freese Jersey . The teams were scoreless for most of the first two periods before Canada scored three times in a span of less than four minutes. Sarah Potomak opened the scoring on the power play.SEATTLE -- Brad Evans made sure not to get too far ahead of himself -- and moments later it paid off. Evans blasted in a hard shot late in the 28th minute on Wednesday night, and Eddie Johnson added an insurance goal during second-half stoppage time to give the Seattle Sounders a 2-0 victory over the Colorado Rapids in the MLS Western Conference knockout playoff game on Wednesday night. The No. 4 seeded Sounders (16-12-7) limped into the post-season on a seven-game winless streak, but advanced to face the No. 1 Portland Timbers in the two-leg, aggregate-goals West semifinals. The first game will be Saturday in Seattle. The No. 5-seeded Rapids finished the season 14-12-9. Colorado lost its last four road games of the year, all by shutout. Evans got his scoring chance when Colorados German Mera headed a cross out of the penalty area. Evans settled it at the top right of the box, took two dribbles in and ripped a hard shot to the back left corner. It was his fifth goal of the season and his second career playoff goal. "It was just the right place at the right time," Evans said. "In some cases, I tend to over-run things a little bit. But this time, I kind of held back and put the brakes on and waited for the play to develop a little bit. Thats why I was able to get in a good position and get a good touch and a good strike on goal." Evans previous post-season goal came in 2008 when he and Sounders coach Sigi Schmid helped Columbus win the MLS Cup before both migrated to the then-expansion Sounders in 2009. Johnson sealed it midway through the third of five minutes of stoppage time when he deked around Mera and beat Colorado goalkeeper Clint Irwin to the back left corner for his 10th goal of the year. The Sounders played the final three minutes of regulation and five minutes of stoppage time a man down after goalkeeper Michael Gspurning was red-carded for handling the ball outside the penalty area.dddddddddddd Colorados Drew Moor had sent a long ball toward the box, and Gspurning was at least a yard outside when he reached out and caught it. "He wanted to come out and head the ball, and realized it bounced too high for him to head it," Schmid said. "He thought he had jumped back into the box, then caught the ball outside the box. The referee (Silviu Petrescu) decided it was a red card." Gspurning, facing a one-game suspension, will be replaced by former U.S. national team and English Premier League star Marcus Hahnemann for Saturdays first leg against Portland. Hahnemann played the final few minutes Wednesday. Seattle had not won since a 2-0 shutout against Real Salt Lake in Seattle on Sept. 13, going 0-4-3 in its final seven regular-season games. "For us to win a game is just a good feeling," Schmid said. "Its a win over a team that embarrassed us last time (5-1 in Colorado on Oct. 5). Its not just a win, its the way we played. I thought we played well. Its not where we were hanging on and scrapping to get by. From that standpoint, it means a little more than just a win." Colorados best chance came late in the 57th minute when Deshorn Brown sent a shot from just inside the box on the left side curling toward the far post. Gspurning came out to knock it away and preserve the shutout. "It was disappointing, but Im certainly proud of the boys for leaving it all out on the field," Moor said. "I wish we would have started off a little brighter. (It was) a playoff game -- its different. 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