The Carolina Hurricanes filled a big need in free agency when they traded for Sharks defensemen, Brent Burns. We have seen some decline in his numbers as of late. The Canes system is set up to benefit him significantly. I am going to break it all down here.
Burns Trade Details
The Canes landed Brent Burns along with Lane Pederson in exchange for forward Steven Lorentz, goaltending prospect Eetu Makiniemi, and a conditional third-round pick in the 2023 NHL Draft. Lorentz has been a solid bottom six forward and still has some upside. I believe he will be a very good third-line center for the Sharks.
Makiniemi is a very good goalie prospect who came over from Finland last season. He played for the AHL’s Chicago Wolves in just 14 games, but put together very nice numbers. He had a .922 save percentage and a 2.06 GAA. Also, he went 11-2-1 with 2 shutouts. He was absolutely fantastic when he played and he should at the very least become a good backup for the Sharks, if not a viable starter. Lastly, the draft pick is to be determined, but the Canes farm system is deep and they can afford to give up one draft pick.
Burns Recent Production
In the past three seasons, Burns has played 208 games and scored 29 goals and registered 128 total points. That is not quite the production we have seen from him in the past as the year before those seasons he was at 83 points in 82 games. Last season, he scored 54 points in 82 games. He also registered a -15 plus/minus for a team that had a -50 goal differential this season. So, the numbers are not what they once were, but he is still registering a good amount of points for a team that is struggling immensely as of late.
The Canes are set up to hide all of Burns’ deficiencies. You may not feel comfortable with Burns as much on the defensive end, which is fine because Jaccob Slavin can handle things on that end and will still play heavy minutes. The Canes are loaded with talent offensively and Burns will be a perfect fit with this group. He’ll take over duties on the first powerplay unit and should improve the powerplay significantly. His numbers should be reminiscent of what Tony DeAngelo was able to produce a year ago, if not better.
Burns is the biggest winner from this deal because he has a chance to contend for a cup again. The Sharks are able to get something for Burns while picking up some assets for their rebuild, including a potential starting goalie of the future. The Canes replace DeAngelo with Burns who could prove to be an upgrade. He very well might be the piece they need to put them over the top and win the Stanley Cup.