Hurricanes add depth to roster

Peter Koutroumpis, Triangle Sports Network
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Peter Koutroumpis, Triangle Sports Network
Peter Koutroumpis, Triangle Sports Network

RALEIGH, N.C. – After cutting the training camp roster by three on Saturday, the Carolina Hurricanes announced on Sunday the addition of two.

After assigning forwards Patrick Brown, Brock McGinn, and Derek Ryan (via waivers) to their AHL affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers, the Hurricanes claimed forward Martin Frk off waivers from Detroit and agreed to contract terms with defenseman Jakub Nakladal.

The moves came about as the result of recent injuries incurred to defensemen Ryan Murphy and Justin Faulk as the Hurricanes prepare to embark on a regular season-opening road trip next week.

“What it means is that we have additional depth in our organization,” head coach Bill Peters said after practice on Sunday.

“Right now we have two D-men that are injured – we have Murph out for a little bit and we have Faulk with a situation where he hasn’t skated in two days. We hope it’s not anything long term, but we gotta make sure we’ve got enough people to go on the road, and we gotta make sure we put people in the right spots. Get in some additional depth and some additional competition.”

Scoring support

Frk will join Carolina’s training camp following Monday’s scheduled off day and comes in with AHL scoring experience and history.

“Martin played well in Grand Rapids last year, and took a step forward in his offensive production with 27 goals in 67 games,” executive vice president and general manager Ron Francis said of the young forward.

“He has been a goal scorer at every level.”

The 23-year old, who has yet to make his NHL debut, skated with the Griffins last season and scored 27 goals and tallied 17 assists in 67 AHL games played with them.

Detroit’s second-round pick (49th overall) in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, Frk ranked second among Griffins skaters, and his 11 power-play goals led the team and ranked tied for fifth in the AHL in 2015-16.

From Pelhrimov, Czech Republic, he has played three full professional seasons since turning pro in 2013-14, and has posted 68 points (36g, 32a) in 148 career AHL regular-season games – all with Grand Rapids.

”I know with Ronny and our management group, all the reports on him in the past 18 months is that he’s trending in the right direction and he’s a guy that I know they’ve had their eye on and have talked a little bit about,” Peters said.

“Next thing you know, he went on waivers, and we made the claim.”

Blue line experience

In signing with Carolina, Nakladal will earn $600,000 for the 2016-17 season.

The 28-year old Nakladal appeared in 27 games with the Calgary Flames in 2015-16 and finished with five points (2g, 3a), six penalty minutes, and averaged 14 minutes of ice time per game.

“Jakub was solid in his first professional season in North America last season, and played well at the World Cup,” Francis said.

“This gives us additional depth and experience along the blue line as we open the season this week.”

Nakladal appeared in 35 AHL games with Stockton last season, and posted 14 points (2g, 12a) during that span.

Prior to signing with Calgary, he spent the 2014-15 season with TPS Turko in Liiga, and tallied three goals and 12 assists (15 points) in 50 games played in Finland’s Elite League.

Nakladal has represented the Czech Republic in a number of international competitions (2012, 2013 and 2015 IIHF World Championships), most recently appearing in all three games for his home country at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

The Hurricanes head coach was well aware of what the European blueliner could bring to his team, having gotten the opportunity to watch him in his role as an assistant coach with Team Canada.

“I got a chance to see every game he played (at the World Cup),” Peters said.

“He played real well there. He played valuable minutes – right-handed shot – playin’ the off-side. He won’t have to do that with us. We’ve got a lot of lefties here that are capable at the NHL level. He’s a right-handed guy that comes in and gives depth – a big guy, puck-movin’ guy. He’s been in North America with some NHL experience with Calgary. We’ll get him over here obviously as soon as we can, and get him acclimated to how we play.”