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Hurricanes Off Season Thread 2022


Mod Squad
Staff member
The draft is coming and will get its own thread but since we're already shifting gears into big picture stuff in the last game thread of the Rangers series, so I figured we'd have a dedicated thread for that.

So, thoughts on the off season?

Coaching staff changes?


Free Agents?


Have at it.


Mod Squad
Staff member
Setting the stage, here's the list of NHL roster players who don't have a contract for next season. Arbitration eligible guys have an asterisk

Martin Necas, Steve Lorentz*, Tony DeAngelo*, Ethan Bear*

Vincent Trocheck, Nino Niederreiter, Derek Stepan, Max Domi, Ian Cole, Brendan Smith

Draft Picks: No 1st round pick, Chicago's 3rd round pick replaces Carolina's 3rd, extra picks In the 6th and 7th from Anaheim and Columbus. Carolina retains the rest of their own picks.


Well-known member
Necas... I don't know what to do there. He cost himself millions this season
Lorentz? good 13th forward?
TDA Have to try and keep him but if someone offer sheetz him have to possibly let him go.
Bear? trade if possible for a bag of pucks or a seventh.. Good guy but After losing time with Covid was a shell.
Trocheck? Not worth what I think it'll take to keep him
Nino I want 2 but might also price himself out
Stepan Nice guy but cut loose
Domi? Doesn't seem to fit what we want to do.
Cole? Expensive penalty Taker..
Smith? good 7th D..

there's my quick and dirty


Well-known member
IMO, none of the RFAs and UFAs fall into the "must sign" category - although I think we need a solution if TDA is to leave. He wasn't the best in the playoffs and his schtick got way too predicable when leading the PP late in the season, but he proved an effective replacement for Dougie Hamilton. I like Nino's physical play and tenacity around the net and would love to keep him if he doesn't ask for the moon. Trocheck is going to go for way more than we'd be willing to pay, so I'm basically writing him off.


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TDA had a great first round and a brutal second round, having said that, he is likely the priority to get signed first, you just dont replace right shot D guys that can run a PP and generate the offense from the backend like him. Hopefully the money makes sense.

Nino is a guy I would like to have back if the number is right, his size and ability to physically impose his will on teams is something this team needs, after TDA, Nino is second on my wish list.

Trochek was good here, but his number he will be seeking on the open market far outweighs his worth on this team. Goodbye Vinny.

Necas, shop him early and often, no rush but see what is out there, he's afraid of doing what it takes to score goals in the areas of the ice you need to be in this league, he is useless unless he is generating offense, I hope he is dealt for another NHL player that can fit in here better.

Losing Cole and Smith hurts a bit from the physical element on the back end but those types are easily replaced in free agency on the open market. Same for Stepan and Domi, likely gone and easily replaced.

Svech really disappointed me in the playoffs, he still has a long way to go to become a true impact player, undisciplined penalties, clumsy at times with his skating, he is far from a superstar player that many expected him to be, I sure hope he finds his game next year better and fixes his shortcomings.

Bear...meh...likely packaged in a trade of some kind this summer, not a great fit here overall.

Daniels has to be shown the door, go find a proven NHL assistant that understands how to run a power play better.

A great season overall with lots of fun games and memories but the heartbreak finish in round two left lots to be desired.


Mod Squad
Staff member
The easy ones ... Domi, Cole, and Stepan are all gone I think. Cole hit his limit in the playoffs. He was brought in to bring veteran leadership and instead took a lot of dumb penalties and generally played terrible. Domi was a cipher other than Game 7 in the first round. Thanks for that and good luck down the road. Stepan I'd rather see on the coaching staff. Lorentz is easy too. He can stay if he's cheap. If not, then see ya.

Necas ... actually re-gained his focus in the playoffs, but was starting from so very far down the well that he never managed to emerge. Personally, while I've defended him in the past and there's no denying his talent ... I'd move him.

Nino ... I bring him back IF he's willing to sign for reasonable term (3 seasons, max) and for 3rd line checking wing money. If either or those is an issue then I'd move on.

Trocheck ... there's no way. He's the 2nd best free agent center available. He's going to get stupidly over-payed and over-termed by somebody, and honestly I'm not convinced he's not part of the problem. Yeah, he had a good post season but he was terrible down the stretch and had been inconsistent his entire career. I love the guy, but maybe it's better to move on.

DeAngelo ... I'm not sure. He produced, but he's still a freaking head case even when he behaves himself off the ice. Brind'Amour and the money are the issues. If Brindy is OK with him, then maybe he's less of a loon than he seems from a distance. If the money is a DIME over budget, then I'm looking elsewhere if I'm the front office.

Bear ... too much depends on his health for me to work up a hard opinion. He was fine pre-Covid and apparently really struggled through recovery. That happens. I think he's got the tools to be a decent 2nd or 3rd pairing guy and he's a right sider. You may bring him back just to see if he can get his game back. Hopefully he'll take a low pressure bridge deal.

Smith ... I'd bring him back and put him back in the 7D role. His compete level is great. He's just a limited player, which is fine.


Mod Squad
Staff member
Also ... keep in mind the young guys who are probably ready to either make an impact on the big club or get moved along in trade packages.

Drury ... I think he can play in the bottom six right now. Not sure how he'll produce in the NHL, but he can defend which makes him valuable.

Keane ... another really good year in the AHL and he's an RFA. Right side D, which makes him a commodity

Kochetkov ... look, he wasn't ready to take that big a step up in class and the Canes ended up almost abusing the guy in the playoffs, but he's got gumption and is already a pro shot stopper. I think they want a full year in the AHL for him next year, but could he back up in the NHL if you got an offer on Raanta? Yeah, I think he could.

There's some wildcards like Ponomarov and Gunler, but some of the other guys (Rees, Suzuki) took a step back this season. I don't think the Canes will be in a mood for adding youth this summer, but I think it's gonna be tough keeping Drury out of the lineup anyway.


Mod Squad
Staff member
One other issue ... what do you do with the core? And by the core, I mean the key players signed to long term or significant contracts.

I honestly don't think Carolina goes there, barring something unusual. They've sniffed around high end players on the scratch and dent pile before, and that seems likely to happen again. But blockbusters don't really seem like Dundon's style. I think adding offense should be a priority, but probably not at the expense of trading away the guys who already give you offense ... if that makes any sense. I honestly think Carolina will be looking to compliment Aho, Teravainen, Svechnikov, etc as opposed to blowing it all up. On D, who knows? They need a power play QB and have one. Is he the right one? I honestly don't know. Slavin, Pesce and Skjei seem safe enough. From there, it's a lot less clear. In net, they're probably fine so long as Kochetkov and Makiniemi can continue to make progress. Andersen and Raanta made afine battery, but their injury issues mean the support group behind them has to be decent. I don't see big changes there.

Bottom line ... I think "the core" remains.


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The core will remain, you have a year left of Staal, the contracts on Slavin, Pesce and Skjei are still in place for now, Aho and Svech are firmly here, KK and Jarvis are long term pieces it appears. I think you could flip Necas and Bear for a piece or two to upgrade the roster.

The goaltending likely returns for one more year with hopes that one of the Finn or the Russian kids is ready in another year or so.

I'd like to see a little money spent in free agency on character guys that have a bit more snarl and girth up front...swapping out the likes of Necas, Stepan and Trochek for more of the playoff-tested battle ready guys is needed.


Canes Moderator
Staff member
CapFriendly says the Canes have $19.375 million available and 14 guys signed. But the available includes Gardiner, so really we have more to play with, assuming that we’ll be a max cap team again. It also includes the $112k bonus overage for Necas.



Mod Squad
Staff member
CapFriendly says the Canes have $19.375 million available and 14 guys signed. But the available includes Gardiner, so really we have more to play with, assuming that we’ll be a max cap team again. It also includes the $112k bonus overage for Necas.

Yeah, for right now I'm assuming that Gardiner will retire once his contract is up and that he'll be LTIRed until then. So, the Canes effectively have $23 million and change to play with. Dundon hasn't made any noise about cutting back the player budget and he's got a big exposure outdoor game coming up next year. I expect him to spend to the Cap, more or less. I'd like to see them save a bit more of a buffer against that Cap than they did this season so they can make a deadline move to shore up. Domi was ... yeah. Not terribly impactful, but was all they could afford.


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This will be another interesting offseason for the Canes.

Everyone really has hit on the key points....a PP that was good for 50 games in the regular season and then completely disappeared. The inability to carry the incredible PK success into the playoffs, dumb penalties, completely hopeless on the road in the playoffs. Our 'stars' completely disappearing in the playoffs for stretches.

On the UFA front, I fully expect us to lose EVERYONE. None of these guys is going to take a discount to stay.

Trocheck is going to get 6 years $42 million from SOMEONE out there. That won't be the Canes
Nino is going to easily find 5 years and $25-30 million SOMEWHERE. That won't be with the Canes.
Stepan is going to be looking for more playing time and will find it somewhere
Domi is not a long term solution, there will be no interest from the Canes
Ian Cole looked cooked at the end of the season and in the playoffs. Canes will make no effort to keep him.
Brendan Smith made good on his 'make good' contract and will find plenty of willing suiters offering a multi year contract approaching $2 million per. Canes are not going to go there.

I don't know what to do with Necas, but its going to be Necas and his agent who are going to decide how this offseason goes I expect. Canes are going to rightfully lowball him on a bridge deal. If his agent comes in with some outrageous contract request, Necas's fate will be immediately sealed and he will be traded. I'm not exactly ready to just dump him as some are willing to do, but it won't surprise me at all if he is traded.

There is ZERO chance the Canes are willing to allow Bear to go to arbitration as a member of this team. He will be dealt for very very little in return.

Lorentz's future here is pretty iffy, but he is a decent 13th forward. He needs to keep him contract demands low...real low...if he wants to stay.

And TDA.....this is incredibly complicated. Canes can't give this guy term or big money. I get that he was good in the regular season and the Canes have no replacement for what he does. But, he is still TDA. I have no idea if the Canes are even interested in continuing on with TDA. If they are, I suspect they are not going to want to play him more than $4 million and only for 1 or 2 years. The risk with TDA is that he is an RFA with arbitration rights. I could see TDA getting a $5+ million in arbitration. I don't think the Canes want to end up in that situation.

So what do you do? Trade him (you would get little back)? Just let him walk? Take your chances with arbitration? I dunno what happens, but this will be a story for sure.

One thing I think is clear....you can see why the Canes supposedly are out there kicking the can on everyone.

This team has high end skilled players, but our best player, Aho, is not a superstar even if the media tries to make him one. Look at the teams still in the playoffs. Panerin, Zibanejad, Fox, Stamkos, Kucherov, Hedman, McDavid, Draisaitl, MacKinnon, Rantanen, Makar. THOSE PLAYERS ARE SUPERSTARS. Aho is a really really good player who absolutely cannot take over a game on his own. The Canes have no such player. You can have success in the playoffs without a superstar or 2, but its a lot easier apparently to shut down 'very very good' players in the playoffs, especially the Canes 'very very good' players.

Oh, and the goaltending. The thing about Raanta is, when he suffers a significant injury (and that looked like one last night), he might not be able to play at 100% for a long long time (aka I don't know if he is going to be ready to go next October). Meanwhile Freddie and the 'sprained knee' is that all going to be healed up for next season? We didn't even get a chance to render a verdict on Freddie because he didn't play in the playoffs. I know Leaf's fans were disappointed to not be able to see Freddie given the chance to allow soft goals in the playoffs at the worst possible time.

Anyhow, I have no idea who the Canes are going to bring in to replace the UFAs we are going to lose. I expect another very interesting offseason with lots of moves, some of which we won't expect.


Well-known member
CapFriendly says the Canes have $19.375 million available and 14 guys signed. But the available includes Gardiner, so really we have more to play with, assuming that we’ll be a max cap team again. It also includes the $112k bonus overage for Necas.

FWIW, this site did contract projections back at the end of December. The top guys were Gaudreau at $10M and Tkatchuk at $9M. Have fun with that Calgary. They had our guys at:
Trocheck $7.8M
Necas: $5.4M
KK: $4.1M (he came in at $4.8M)
Nino: $4.1M
TDA $2.3M

Obviously Necas's stock has dropped since then. Not sure how they have TDA so low, but it's not my model.



Mod Squad
Staff member
At this point, I do wonder if Carolina circles back and tries to make a play for Chychrun. I think you'd have to include the 2023 1st rounder, but if you're open to move on from Necas and probably one other NHLer (or two prospects), I'm not sure Arizona is really going to do much better. And Chychrun mostly solves your DeAngelo problem. He's not a headcase, can play on the PP and plays halfway decent defense so you don't have to shelter him.


Well-known member
Be interesting to hear about injuries. I think Aho played through a concussion or at least had other issues from that hit/collision vs the Bruins. I think Svetch maybe too. Guessing Necas was also battling through something because he continued to get prime minutes despite his lack of effectiveness. How is Jarvis going to bounce back - that looked ugly.

Bear as well.

I expect that comes into play on contracts.

I do think that TDA, Necas, Lorentz, Trocheck didn’t do themselves any favors with their performance the last third of the season and playoffs. So they could be in the range the Canes could be interested in assuming that’s not where you make your changes.

our top 6 supposedly offensive forwards seems smallish or not physically up to the playoffs. I think that will be addressed. We didn’t really have a way to put a physically imposing offensive line out there without breaking up Staals line and Svetch alone didn’t get it done.


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We also need someone to take shots. At times our team passed up good chances hoping for the great chance


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Necas to me even at a two year bridge deal is not worth more than $2 to $2.5m moving forward, his agent will be looking for some stupid number likely closer to $4 or $4.5 per.

TDA comes with such baggage that half the teams in the league may say no thanks but even still, that's a tough nut to crack to figure out where he comes in at.

Players do seem to enjoy playing for Rod so I guess the free agency route could be positive for the Canes if they decide to plug a few holes in the middle to lower tier UFA guys, I would stay far away from the likes of Gaudreau, Forsberg, just far too rich for the Canes and their cap.