Defenceman Slater Koekkoek is returning to the Edmonton Oilers.
On Thursday, Koekkoek signed a two-year deal with an average annual value of $925,000.
“I’m excited for the opportunity,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to this year and the following.
“We have some new additions and will be hungry.”
Koekkoek, 27, was limited to 18 games in the 2021 regular season. He suffered a broken collarbone against Calgary on Feb. 20.
“Going through that was emotional,” he said. “I leaned a lot on my family for support.
“I got along with everybody around the room, but you’re not around that much. I look forward to building more of a friendship with a lot of guys on the team.”
Koekkoek went viral on social media when he posted a photo of the X-ray of his broken collarbone.
“I like to keep people informed. I know there’s a time secrecy is obviously needed so people aren’t targeting you, but I though nine out of 10 people knew that the collarbone was broken,” said Koekkoek.
“I didn’t even realize it was a big thing until people started saying no one releases their injuries.”
He returned to play in the Oilers’ final regular season game and all four playoff games.
“A lot of people don’t know that when I came back, that collarbone was only 60 per cent bone healed, but I had a metal plate in there,” Koekkoek explained.
“It was kind of a weighing of risk versus reward. We felt that it was secure enough.”
Koekkoek finished the regular season with one goal and added an assist in the playoffs. He was drafted 10th overall in 2012 by the Tampa Bay Lightning.