The Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks were the only two teams Oliver Ekman-Larsson would waive his no-movement clause for when the Arizona Coyotes attempted to trade him last fall. With the 29-year-old defenseman back on the trade block, perhaps the Bruins will revisit those discussions.
NBC Sports Boston’s Nick Goss took note of the Bruins’ need for a left-side blueliner who can log big minutes and skate with Brandon Carlo on the second pairing. He felt the trade market was their best bet to address that issue.
Goss, however, doesn’t consider Ekman-Larsson a fit with the Bruins. He pointed to the Coyotes captain’s hefty $8.25-million annual average value through 2026-27, suggesting it would take away money needed to re-sign Carlo and Mike Reilly. Citing the rearguard’s declining performance in recent years, Goss suggested the Nashville Predators’ Mattias Ekholm as a better trade target.
Boston Hockey Now’s Joe Haggerty, however, mentioned Ekman-Larsson collected 24 points in 46 games with the low-scoring Coyotes this season. The veteran’s ice time this season (20:58) was his lowest since his rookie season but he still logged top-four minutes.
Haggerty felt the decline in Ekman-Larsson’s play would work in the Bruins’ favor. If they can get the Coyotes to agree to pick up part of his annual cap hit, they can take advantage of his reduced value in the trade market.
Ekman-Larsson could regain his form on a deeper club. He’ll consider waiving his NMC for more than just two teams this time around but the Bruins could remain on his list of destinations. Despite the remaining tenure of his contract, he could be a fit in Boston if the two sides work out the salary-cap finances.