The Arizona Coyotes have signed defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson to an eight-year contract extension worth a reported $8.25 million a year.
The 26-year-old is heading into the final year of a six-year contract worth $33 million. He would’ve been an unrestricted free agent at this time next summer, but his value to the Coyotes is clear.
“We’ve been very clear that we’re willing to do whatever we possibly can to have him come back, and (we) think he’s a heck of a defenceman, heck of a player, heck of a person,” Arizona general manager John Chayka said in June.
Ekman-Larsson had 14 goals and 28 assists in 82 games in 2017-2018. He has 102 goals and a total of 290 points in 576 career games, all with the Coyotes franchise.
The Swedish defenceman was drafted sixth overall by Phoenix in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. His best season to date was a 55-point campaign in 2015-2016.
“This is a very happy day for me and my family,” Ekman-Larsson said. “I have always loved living and playing in Arizona and this is where I want to be. I signed with the Coyotes because I believe in our team, I believe in our fans and I believe in this market and I want to win here.”