What did William Nylander’s first NHL goal and Michael Nylander’s last NHL goal have in common? Brooks Laich

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Talk about a small world.

Toronto Maple Leafs forward and highly touted prospect William Nylander scored his first career NHL goal on Saturday, ripping a shot from the slot against the Ottawa Senators. Brooks Laich, traded from Washington to Toronto last weekend, was credited with the only assist on the goal.

On April 5, 2009, Laich, then a member of the Washington Capitals, also assisted on Michael Nylander’s last NHL regular season goal in a win over the Atlanta Thrashers.

From the Toronto Star:

Laich, meanwhile, will always have a special place with the Nylander family. The 12-year veteran assisted on the last NHL goal of Michael Nylander, William’s father, in April 2009. Almost seven years later, he assisted on the first NHL goal of the son.

“It’s a pretty neat situation … I don’t know where that puts me, cousin or uncle, but it was a pretty neat stat, and a special, special moment for William,” said Laich, who had no idea of his tie to father and son, and little memory of the setup on Michael Nylander’s last NHL goal.