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Trade: Sharks free up cap room, send Brent Burns to Hurricanes

hurricanes sharks burns

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - APRIL 29: Brent Burns #88 of the San Jose Sharks looks up at the scoreboard during a stoppage in the second period of a game against the Seattle Kraken at Climate Pledge Arena on April 29, 2022 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Christopher Mast/NHLI via Getty Images)

NHLI via Getty Images

San Jose Sharks general manager Mike Grier continued re-shaping his new roster on Wednesday by trading Brent Burns and Lane Pederson to the Carolina Hurricanes for Steven Lorentz, Eetu Mäkiniemi and a conditional 2023 third-round pick.

The Hurricanes will retain 33% of Burns’ remaining contract with Burns costing San Jose $2.64 million on their cap for the next three years. His contract carries an $8 million salary cap hit and runs through the 2024-25 NHL season. Carolina was reportedly one of teams on Burns’ three-team trade list.

Changes were expected in San Jose following a third straight season without playoff hockey. In May, Burns knew something had to give and didn’t shoot down the idea of moving on from the Sharks.

“It’s definitely tough when you lose three years, not making the playoffs,” he said. “I think everybody feels that way, whether they’re young or older. At the end of the day, that’s what we all play for. I’ve been in the league long enough to know that, when you’re doing these meetings at this time, there’s a lot of changes that happen, that need to happen.

[NHL free agency tracker 2022: Full list of offseason signings]

“A lot of changes are going to happen here. When you’re looking for a new general manager, there’s a lot of things on the table. So I don’t know.”

With Tony DeAngelo now in Philadelphia, there was a need for the Hurricanes to add a right-side defenseman. John Klingberg, an unrestricted free agent, was rumored to be a possibility but in the end general manager Don Waddell went with Burns.

Burns had been one of the Sharks’ highest volume shooters over the last four seasons, something that should allow him to fit in nicely on the Hurricanes’ blue line. Carolina is a team that likes to shoot the puck and that should help the 37-year-old stay productive coming off a 10-goal, 54-point season.

Grier gets to work

A week after taking over as GM, Mike Grier has begun remodeling the Sharks. With Burns gone, it now leaves Erik Karlsson and Marc-Édouard Vlasic as the two richest contracts on the roster. Karlsson has five years and $51 million owed to him ($11.5M cap hit) while Vlasic ($7M cap hit) has four years and $27 million in salary left on his deal.

With Burns gone, Grier now has a little under $13 million in cap space, per Cap Friendly. Kaapo Kähkönen and Mario Ferraro are among the main restricted free agents to re-sign, which should still leave him plenty of room to continue to add minus any other cap-opening trades.


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.