The Washington Capitals have added even more depth up front, acquiring Johan Larsson from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for a 2023 third-round pick. The Coyotes will also be retaining 50 percent of Larsson’s remaining contract.
Larsson, 29, hasn’t played since January 25 for the Coyotes but isn’t expected to be out the entire season. He underwent surgery on a sports hernia in early February and was given an eight-week timeline, meaning he’ll be an option for the Capitals at some point.
That injury history does make the third-round pick seem like a bit of a risk, but Larsson was playing well before he went down. With 15 points in 29 games he was going to blow past his previous career-high of 18, and he is still a strong defensive contributor. In Washington, he likely won’t be asked to play in very many offensive situations but does give the team some added depth down the middle.
At a $1.4MM cap hit he comes at a relatively inexpensive contract, and since it expires at the end of the season it won’t affect the Capitals moving forward. This is a go-for-it type trade, with Washington knowing they needed some added depth up front if they want to compete in the Eastern Conference playoffs–or even just the Metropolitan race.
Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet first reported the trade.