Hurricanes leverage cap space to plug two important holes

Carolina emerged as a winner in free agency, acquiring Brent Burns and Max Pacioretty for next to nothing.

Video Transcript

JUSTIN CUTHBERT: For me, it was the Carolina Hurricanes until the Goodrow signing because they did some really quality work in-- within the first few hours of free agency, landing two players who fill holes for virtually no cost. The first move was Brent Burns, a recent Norris Trophy winning defenseman. A guy who's had a tremendous career.

A guy who can still play, logged in like the top five, I think, in total minutes last season. Put up a decent amount of points. I think he had 10 goals and still broke the 55 point mark. He takes the place of Tony DeAngelo, who's going to the Philadelphia Flyers, as the offensive focused right shot defenseman for Carolina, of which they need it.

He comes over at 66% of the cost. So a little over 5 and 1/2 million, I believe, because the San Jose Sharks were willing to retain. And really they just wanted out from underneath this deal, which still has three years remaining because they didn't take much back in return. I think it was just Steven Lorentz, and a goaltending prospect, and a mid-round pick along with retaining that salary.

So the Sharks, they've given up on their competitive window, of course, and they should have. They're changing things under Mike Grier and getting out from underneath the Brent Burns contract makes a lot of sense, but it also makes a lot of sense for Carolina to get in on what could be a difference maker on their back end in a guy who could potentially do a better job than Tony DeAngelo did, and DeAngelo was a huge piece to the puzzle last season for the Carolina Hurricanes.

But on top of that, just before all of the television networks left the airwaves, the Vegas Golden Knights woke up from their hibernation and sent Max Pacioretty, a guy who scored 30 goals routinely in his sleep for a very long time, has been one of the top players in terms of goals per minute in the NHL for forever. He was sent to the Hurricanes for literally no cost, future considerations.

Vegas has had a very difficult time scoring goals. Max Pacioretty was supposed to be the solution there and did provide some of the solution, but couldn't do it all himself. Ran into some injury troubles. But this is a potential boon here for Carolina who demonstrate the benefit of having cap space at your disposal, because when a team like Vegas, who's in cap hell, decides it needs to give up on a player like Max Pacioretty, you can just extend your hands and accept him for free.

Pacioretty is something that the Hurricanes haven't had, which is a natural goal scorer. He can make a huge difference for this team because the one thing that they continue to run into in the postseason is a lack of goal scoring. So with Burns and Pacioretty they become far more dangerous from an offensive perspective this season and when they get to the playoffs next year. It was a wonderful day for the Carolina Hurricanes.

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