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Shots From The Point By OEL

In his latest blog, Arizona Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson writes about the team's hectic travel schedule, the city of Montreal and friend Stan Wilson

by Oliver Ekman-Larsson @OEL23 / Arizona Coyotes

WINNIPEG -- Today we headed back on the road for four more games here in Canada. We've been on the road a lot this season, but I kind of like it. All of this traveling around is harder for the guys who are married and have kids, but with me being single I like seeing the different cities and arenas and crowds. Hopefully we'll get to see some snow on this trip. If we do, I'm sure I'll appreciate getting back to Arizona after a while.

I think we've been playing better lately and we have to keep doing that and stay positive. We didn't win any of the games on the last trip, but we competed hard against Washington, Pittsburgh and St. Louis, and they are three very good teams. I think we did a lot of good things in those games, but at the same time we've had two or three breakdowns every single game and those are costing us wins. We talk about fixing this a lot, and I think if we can eliminate those breakdowns we should start winning more games.

One of our games on this trip will be played in Montreal. That city is a very special place for me because that's where I got drafted in 2009 and that's where everything started for me in the NHL. I have a lot of great memories from that weekend. I had my parents, my grandparents and my brother there with me and it was a great experience.

I'll always remember the night before my draft. I had dinner with my family and we were all talking about where they thought I would get drafted. Some of them were saying I would get picked by Phoenix with the sixth overall pick, and I remember saying "There's no chance I'm going to be drafted that high." I was thinking I'd be drafted in the late first round or maybe even early in the second, and that's what I was hoping for. As it turned out, Phoenix did pick me and it's worked out good for me. I've loved playing for the Coyotes and want to continue to be part of what we're building here.

I want to end this blog by writing about my friend Stan Wilson. Stan is our Head Equipment Manager and the other night we honored him for working 2,000 NHL games, all with the same franchise! Stan means a lot to me and to all the guys in our room now and in the past. He always comes to work with a smile on his face. Even when we've lost a few games in a row, he's always happy and positive. Stan is a great worker and a great guy as well. It's amazing how many games he has worked, and I'm so happy he got to reach 2,000 games and that I was there to see it. I think he's got 2,000 more games in him. It's funny because Stan doesn't like getting attention for doing his job and you could tell when we brought him out on the ice the other night that he wasn't very comfortable being in the spotlight. But he definitely deserved that recognition. He always works so hard and I don't think we appreciate and thank him enough. Stan is definitely a person I will remember and value as a friend long after I stop playing hockey.

Thanks for reading.

--OEL

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