The Phoenix Coyotes have signed defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson to a six year $33 million contract. He is currently leading Coyote defensemen in scoring with 3 goals and 14 assists and he set career highs last year with 13 goals and 19 assists. He was also one of only six Coyotes players to play in all 82 games last season. General Manager Don Maloney had this to say about the signing:
“Oliver is an exceptional young player who will continue to improve as he matures. He is an important part of our future and we are pleased to have agreed on a long term contract”
This move has clearly taken Ekman-Larsson off the Phoenix trade block, also it keeps him from being an RFA in July. This is good for the Coyotes because they wanted to match any offer sheet given to Ekman-Larsson but given their financial situation that may not have been possible. Ekman-Larsson had this to say about the deal:
“It feels good to have it done, of course, but I didn’t think about it when I played. I just tried to play my best to help my team.”
The Coyotes believe that Ekman-Larsson will be a top player in the NHL, and given his success so far at such a young age this long-term deal is definitely a good investment.