The Canes made a splash when they traded for Brent Burns early into free agency. Then, they followed it up with a massive move to bring in Max Pacioretty. The team needed to fill some holes and they have done very well to do so.
Canes Fill Biggest Need
The Canes had a big hole after Vincent Trocheck signed with the Rangers. He has been very productive when healthy for the Knights. He scored 0.87 points per game for in his career with the Knights. Last season he only played 39 games, but scored 19 goals and 37 points. This is probably the best piece they could have gotten on the trade market for what they needed.
Pacioretty Is Not Alone
Pacioretty was not the only player headed to Carolina in the deal. Dylan Coghlan is a young defensemen at just 24 years old. He has only been with the Knights for two seasons at limited capacity. In 2020-21, he played just 29 games, whereas in 2021-22, he played 59 games. He is just finding himself as a pro. He has a lot of upside and has shown offensive flashes for the Knights. The Canes should have themselves a solid third-liner in Coghlan on a cheap contract.
Canes Roster Filling Out
At center, you have Sebastian Aho, Jordan Staal, Jesperi Kotkaniemi, and Lane Pederson. Max Pacioretty, Andrei Svechnikov, Teuvo Teravainen, Seth Jarvis, Jesper Fast, and Ondrej Kase fill in most of the wing spots. We still need to wait and see what happens with Martin Necas. Also, there are prospect options. Most likely of those would be Jack Drury who has a real shot to make the opening day roster as of right now.
Defensively, the top four are all locked with Jaccob Slavin, Brent Burns, Brett Pesce, and Brady Skjei. Dylan Coghlan, Jake Gardiner, and possibly Ethan Bear (RFA) will be vying for line three duties. There’s also prospects like Joey Keane and Scott Morrow with potential to see games in 2022-23. In net, you have the same goalies as last season. Frederik Andersen will be back as the starter. Antti Raanta returns as the backup. Pyotr Kochetkov will remain in the AHL, waiting for his name to be called.
Canes Wheeling and Dealing
This was the second deal the Canes have made on opening day of free agency. I would not be surprised if they weren’t done there. They were rumored at one point to have interested in Vladimir Tarasenko. This deal probably halts that move, but who knows. The team is seemingly ready to finally go for it all. They have brought in multiple nice pieces already this off-season. There will be a lot of new pieces, but they seem to be all in on winning and it is an exciting time for Canes fans.