The Arizona Coyotes will have two reinforcements at practice today, as Craig Morgan of PHNX Sports reports that Johan Larsson and Andrew Ladd are out of the COVID protocol. Ladd actually came out of the protocol on Wednesday, Morgan notes, but he didn’t play for the team that night.
After a short winning streak, the Coyotes were once again outclassed in that game by the Edmonton Oilers, allowing 43 shots and five goals against. There are going to be a lot of nights like those even after Larsson and Ladd get back into the lineup.
Neither one is a real impact player at the NHL level at this point, though Larsson should be an interesting trade candidate later this season after carrying such a heavy load for the Coyotes. The 29-year-old forward is on an expiring, $1.4MM contract and has averaged nearly 18 minutes of ice time through his first 15 games. He has failed to score during that time, but was never known for his offensive abilities anyway. As a depth center that can be deployed heavily in the defensive zone, the Coyotes may be able to secure another mid-round draft pick or prospect.
Ladd meanwhile is likely just happy to be back in the NHL after a long absence, playing out the rest of that seven-year, $38.5MM deal he signed in 2016. With one more year on the deal after this one, it would be a hard sale at the deadline for the Coyotes even if the veteran forward showed he can still contribute at the highest level.