NHL trade rumors: Vancouver Canucks interested in Oliver Ekman-Larsson

Oliver Ekman-Larsson #23 of the Arizona Coyotes (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Oliver Ekman-Larsson #23 of the Arizona Coyotes (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

According to the latest NHL trade rumors, Arizona Coyotes captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson could be headed to the Vancouver Canucks.

The trade market is starting to heat up. According to the latest NHL trade rumors, Arizona Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson could be the next player traded. He was recently put on top of TSN’s Trade Bait list. The Vancouver Canucks are one of the teams that has expressed interest in him.

According to Elliotte Friedman, the Canucks are one of the two teams he’d accept a trade to. The other one is the Boston Bruins.

Plus, according to Canucks insider Rick Dhaliwal, Ekman-Larsson has already declined trades to the Flames and Oilers.

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Vancouver is a gorgeous city and the Canucks are a promising team with a lot of exciting pieces. They have a bright future, so it’s not completely surprising OEL would accept a trade there. OEL is also friends with the Sedin twins, who obviously Vancouver has a special connection with.

The Canucks have always loved to have some Swedish players on their team. Most notably, the Canucks have Elias Pettersson and Alexander Edler, who is someone a lot of Swedish defensemen look up to.

Acquiring Ekman-Larsson would be a bit of a risky move for the Canucks. He has seven years left on his current deal and he carries a $8.25 million cap hit. Furthermore, OEL turns 30 next year and age is rarely kind to defensemen.

Moreover, he has been struggling in recent years. Specifically, Ekman-Larsson’s even strength play has been very underwhelming. And not just as far as production. His underlying stats have quite underwhelming too.

Ekman-Larsson would give the Canucks power play a boost, but they don’t really need too much help there. Unless they want to take Quinn Hughes off their top power play unit (which would be a bad idea), there’s not a spot for OEL on their top unit.

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A package for Ekman-Larsson would likely be heavily centered around prospects and draft picks. The Coyotes need lots of both of them. However, the Canucks would probably want to clear some cap space in the trade as well. The big question is, precisely who are they sending to the Coyotes? One can imagine Arizona would love to get someone like Brock Boeser.

It’ll be interesting to see where these trade talks lead. At the very least, Ekman-Larsson seems willing to waive his no-movement clause, which is pretty telling.