Connect with us


Why the Ekman-Larsson Buyout Helps the Canucks & Hurts the Coyotes

The buyout of defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson doesn’t just impact the Vancouver Canucks, but it stings the Arizona Coyotes.

The Vancouver Canucks have made a bold move by buying out defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson on Friday. While this decision provides immediate relief to the Canucks’ salary cap situation, it comes with long-term implications. Additionally, this move significantly impacts the Arizona Coyotes’ ability to conduct business as usual, as they lose one of their three salary retention slots. Let’s delve into the details and explore the potential implications of this transaction.

By buying out Ekman-Larsson, the Canucks will be responsible for paying him $19.5 million over the next eight years, even if he plays for another team. This move allows Vancouver to save approximately $10 million in real cash and provides some short-term salary cap relief. However, it places a considerable burden on the team’s future finances. Out of the $29 million owed to Ekman-Larsson, $18.5 million will be paid out in the next two seasons, emphasizing the immediate cost-saving strategy employed by the Canucks.

The Canucks’ Motivation for the Move

Some experts view this move as a calculated decision by Canucks’ General Manager, Patrik Allvin. Initially preferring a trade rather than a buyout, the team’s salary cap constraints forced their hand. By freeing up cap space for the upcoming season, the Canucks hope to position themselves for potential roster upgrades. While the move has received mixed reviews, it is clear that Vancouver aims to become a playoff-caliber team next season.

Speculation has arisen regarding where Ekman-Larsson will ultimately wind up. Teams such as the Carolina Hurricanes, Boston Bruins, and Toronto Maple Leafs have been mentioned as potential landing spots. However, given his declining production, Ekman-Larsson might find himself playing a depth role on a contending team, possibly signing a two-million-dollar contract to bolster their blue line.

Impact on the Canucks and Coyotes

The Canucks’ need to shed salary in order to strengthen their roster this summer was well-known within the NHL community. However, finding takers for their contracts in a flat cap climate proved to be challenging. The Ekman-Larsson buyout was seen as a necessary move to kickstart Vancouver’s offseason plans and create flexibility for future roster improvements.

Oliver Ekman-Larsson Canucks
Oliver Ekman-Larsson was bought out by the Vancouver Canucks on Friday

Unfortunately, this move also affects the Arizona Coyotes, as they lose one of their three salary retention slots for the next eight years. The Coyotes now face limitations in maneuvering player contracts and managing their finances effectively.

The Vancouver Canucks’ decision to buy out Oliver Ekman-Larsson has undoubtedly shaken up the NHL landscape. It doesn’t just create potential salary issues for them down the road, but it negatively impacts the Coyotes, who have proven they are in the business of taking on bad contracts. With one less spot open to retain salary on contracts others are trying to shed, that’s one less team the rest of the NHL can potentially look to for a bailout.

The good news for the Canucks is that there is both immediate cap relief and the long-term financial implications are lessened because of an expected jump in the overall cap. As the offseason progresses, it will be interesting to see how both teams adapt to this unforeseen development and whether it leads to further roster changes or potential trades. It will also be fascinating to watch how many other buyouts happen and what other teams are affected as a result.

Next: 5 Reasons Auston Matthews Should Be the Maple Leafs Captain

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Top-Ten Longest and Most Expensive Buyouts in NHL History

Leave a Reply

More News