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EKMAN-LARSSON ADDRESSES TRADE TALKS, CALLS IT A TOUGH SITUATION

It was the biggest trade of the offseason that didn't pan out. For weeks, the Arizona Coyotes attempted to move defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson, more for money purposes than anything else. The Vancouver Canucks and Boston Bruins were the front runners but a deal wasn't reached before the deadline of October 9th set by Ekman-Larsson and his agent, and the blueliner will remain a Coyote for at least another year. Ekman-Larsson has finally addressed the situation in his home country of Sweden, insisting he never asked to be traded.

"I signed (in 2018) because I wanted to be in Arizona until I'm 36," Ekman-Larsson told Ronnie Ronnkvist of Swedish publication Hockey Sverige. "When this (trade) rumor appeared, it felt awkward, and it was a tough situation. I had never been in a situation like this before with trade rumors. Mentally, it was tough."

Ekman-Larsson himself picked Vancouver and Boston as teams he would be willing to go with, as per the no-trade clause in his contract.

"I picked those teams because I didn't want to stand in the way of the (Coyotes) in case they felt like they needed to move me. That's the person I am. I put those teams there as alternatives, but I never really wanted to move."

"I never really wanted to do anything but to stay in Arizona. I'm really happy that it ended this way. I really like to live there and it would have been very hard for me to leave."



"There were a lot of rumors that the team would sell and get rid of players to save money," Ekman-Larsson said regarding Arizona. "But it never really happened and I actually think that we have a very good team on paper. We're a really tight-knight group and I really appreciate that."

The 29-year-old has spent his entire 10-year career with the Coyotes and was named captain in 2018-19. He ranks fourth on the franchise's all-time games played list and 10th in points.

TIM TUCKER
OCTOBER 28, 2020  (17H52)
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