Over the last couple of seasons, the Arizona Coyotes have had to make the hard decision on whether they wanted to be buyers or sellers before the Trade Deadline.
With having the third lowest point total in the entire league, there’s no decision to make this season. The Coyotes are clear sellers heading into the deadline on March 2.
More from Arizona Coyotes
- Arizona Coyotes: Slumping Strome Shipped to Chicago
- Arizona Coyotes: How Coach Rick Tocchet Sparked His Offense
- Arizona Coyotes: 3 Keys to Win Over Blue Jackets
- Arizona Coyotes: 3 Takeaways From Saturday’s Loss in Winnipeg
- Arizona Coyotes: Dvorak Out Indefinitely After Surgery
Now the speculation begins on who exactly the Coyotes will move over the next couple of weeks. Most of the talk has centered around Antoine Vermette, who will be a free agent following this season. Defensemen Keith Yandle and Zbynek Michalek remain likely options to be dealt as well.
One player who won’t be moved under any circumstance though is captain Shane Doan. Doing an interview on TSN1200 in Ottawa, general manager Don Maloney said Doan is the only “untouchable” on the roster.
It’s no surprise that Maloney would say that about Doan. He’s one of the most beloved athletes in the Valley and at this stage of his career, it makes more sense to keep because you aren’t going to get back equal value in a trade with all the things Doan brings to the table.
The real news here is Maloney’s comments regarding Oliver Ekman-Larsson. In my opinion, OEL should be right there with Doan in the “untouchable” category as well.
Ekman-Larsson got off to a slow start this season, but he’s still managing to have a good year. In 48 games, the Coyotes lone All-Star representative has 23 points and a +/- rating of -12, which isn’t bad considering he doesn’t have a whole lot of help on the roster.
Only 23 years old, OEL is already one of the better players at his position in the entire league and he continues to get better and better. He’s schedule to make $5.5 million in each of the next four seasons, which isn’t exactly back-breaking considering his skill and age.
Now, I know as a general manager that you listen to everything on all of your players because some team may get desperate and blow you away with a trade proposal, but Ekman-Larsson is a piece that this team should build around going forward, not move. He would be the perfect candidate to replace Doan as the Coyotes captain.
Stay with HeatWaved for all your Coyotes Trade Deadline coverage.