Carolina Hurricanes put finishing touches on opening night roster

Salary cap finesse allows club to keep players in place

Peter Koutroumpis, Triangle Sports Network
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Peter Koutroumpis (pksport)

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RALEIGH, NC – The Carolina Hurricanes announced on Tuesday that the team had completed all roster moves ahead of Wednesday’s opening game of the 2022-23 season against the Columbus Blue Jackets at PNC Arena.

Securing depth to start the season

Anyone who feared Jordan Martinook would miss opening night was relieved to know that the team’s last-minute roster moves kept them under the salary cap.

As a result, Martinook was affirmed on the roster accordingly.

The club also announced that it had signed forward Derek Stepan to a one-year, $750,000 contract.

Stepan, 32, entered training camp on a professional tryout (PTO) contract and tallied four points (3g, 1a) in three preseason games.

The performance was enough to earn him another year in Carolina after signing as a free agent last season.

Stepan posted 19 points (9g, 10a) in 58 games with the Hurricanes in 2021-22.

 “Having Derek in Carolina last season, we know what he brings to the table and what he adds to our team,” general manager Don Waddell said.

“He gives us additional forward depth and provides us with yet another veteran presence in the locker room.”

With Stepan’s place on the roster secured, the Hurricanes recalled Martinook from the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League (AHL) and reassigned forward Jamieson Rees and goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov to Chicago.

Forward Jack Drury had also been assigned to Chicago during the initial adjustment made on Monday.

LTIR shell game done

One final move included forward Max Pacioretty who was also placed on long-term injured reserve (LTIR).

The Hurricanes’ roster shuffling was more or less a set of ‘paper’ moves initiated a day earlier that first placed defenseman Jake Gardiner on long-term injured reserve (LTIR) while Pacioretty was first placed on the injured non-roster list before the LTIR on Tuesday.

Gardiner, 32, earned 32 points (4g, 28a) in 94 NHL games during his first two seasons with Carolina, but due to hip and back injuries has not played an NHL game since May 19, 2021. 

Pacioretty, 33, underwent surgery to repair a torn achilles in August and is currently rehabbing with the expectation to return to play later this season. 

2022-2023 Carolina Hurricanes – Roster 101222

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