Many pundits believe that Oliver Ekman-Larsson is primed for a breakout season, but he’ll need to bide his time in the AHL first.
The young defenseman was one of 29 Phoenix Coyotes assigned to the AHL’s Portland Pirates. The team listed the following players in that group:
Forwards: Scott Arnold, Alexandre Bolduc, Chris Brown, Chris Conner, Brett Hextall, Rob Klinkhammer, Phil Lane, Jordan Martinook, Andy Miele, Joel Rechlicz, Brendan Shinnimin, Jordan Szwarz and Ethan Werek.
Defensemen: Mathieu Brodeur, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Maxim Goncharov, Brandon Gormley, Mark Louis, David Rundblad, Michael Stone, Chris Summers and Justin Weller
Goalies: Louis Domingue, Chad Johnson, Mike Lee and Mark Visentin.
(Admit it, you’re tempted to buy a Pirates Klinkhammer jersey.)
Sarah McLellan reports that Coyotes GM Don Maloney was reluctant to send Ekman-Larsson to the AHL, but “OEL” said he wanted to go.