In a lightning-fast offensive play, Oliver Ekman-Larsson showcased his scoring skills for the Florida Panthers, leading them to an early 1-0 advantage against Connor Bedard's Chicago Blackhawks. The action unfolded just 39 seconds into the game, with Sam Bennett winning a crucial faceoff against Jason Dickinson.
Ekman-Larsson capitalized on the opportunity, executing a flawless tip-in to secure his fourth goal of the season. Assists for the goal were credited to Sam Reinhart and Evan Rodrigues.
Ekman-Larsson, often referred to by his initials "OEL," is a skilled Swedish defenseman contributing to the Florida Panthers in the National Hockey League (NHL). His remarkable goal demonstrated his talent and the effective collaboration within the Panthers' offensive unit.
As of the 2023-24 season, Ekman-Larsson has accumulated impressive statistics, boasting 13 games, three goals, four assists and a notable average ice time of 23 minutes and 44 seconds. His significant role in the Panthers' defensive strategy and offensive contributions positions him as a player to watch in the ongoing NHL season.
A look at Oliver Ekman-Larsson's NHL career
Oliver Ekman-Larsson's NHL career began with Tingsryds AIF and Leksands IF in the HockeyAllsvenskan before he was drafted sixth overall by the Phoenix Coyotes in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. Ekman-Larsson signed an entry-level contract in 2010 and quickly made his mark, recording his first NHL point in October 2010 and scoring his inaugural NHL goal in January 2011. He also missed games during the 2010 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships as he represented Sweden.
Ekman-Larsson's career blossomed with the Coyotes, achieving milestones such as his 100th NHL career point in 2014 and breaking records in the 2014–15 season. He became the first Swedish-born defenseman to score over 20 goals in one season. Ekman-Larsson signed an eight-year, $66 million contract extension in 2018 and was named captain.
In 2021, he was traded to the Vancouver Canucks, where he had notable moments, like scoring his first goal in October 2021 and a triumphant return against the Coyotes in April 2022. However, on June 16, 2023, the Canucks bought out the final four years of his contract, making him a free agent.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson quickly found a new home with the Florida Panthers, signing a one-year, $2.25 million contract on July 1, 2023. As he joins the Panthers for the 2023–24 NHL season, Ekman-Larsson brings a wealth of experience and defensive prowess, aiming to contribute to his new team's success.