The Carolina Hurricanes acquired star defenseman Brent Burns from the San Jose Sharks in a multiplayer deal on Wednesday.
The Sharks traded Burns and AHL forward Lane Pederson to Carolina for forward Steven Lorentz, AHL goaltender Eetu Makiniemi, and a conditional third-round pick in 2023. The Sharks retained 34% of Burns’ cap hit. The conditional pick will be the lower of Carolina’s two third-round picks to be determined at the end of the season.
Burns had to authorize the trade with Carolina.
“Since the announcement, eight or nine of our current players have texted me and said, ‘Wow, they can’t believe we have this guy,'” said Carolina’s President and General Manager Don Waddell. “It’s always a positive sign.”
Burns, 37, has three more seasons at an average annual value of $8 million (AAV) versus salary cap. The Hurricanes will have a $5.36 million cap hit for Burns.
But in real dollars, Burns will make $6.5 million ($3.5 million in signing bonus money) the next season and then $5 million ($2 million in signing bonuses) each of the following two seasons in signing bonus funds) for the remainder of the deal. That was undoubtedly appealing to the Hurricanes.
Carolina needed a defender on the right to move the puck after selling Tony DeAngelo to the Philadelphia Flyers. The Hurricanes were linked with Dallas Stars free-agent defenseman John Klingberg but chose Burns.
“I’m coming at a time where right now it’s really all about winning and having a chance to win it all,” Burns said. “I chased the boys in red and black across the ice there for a while. … It’s a great, great team that fights for a championship every year.”
Burns had 54 points in 82 games for the Sharks last season. He is considered one of the NHL’s most prolific players, generating shots on goal, having led the NHL with 320 shots in the 2016-17 season, the same year he won the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenseman. His ability to put shots through on the power play had been an asset during his 11 years at San Jose.
Burns had 594 points in 798 games with San Jose. Prior to that, he spent seven seasons with the Minnesota Wild, scoring 183 points in 453 games as both a forward and defenseman.
He played in 679 consecutive games in the 2013/14 season, while his 15 overtime goals are the most by a defender in league history.
“You always look [at] Age, but everyone ages differently,” Waddell said. “And this is a big man who has played a lot of minutes and has been very long-lived in his career. So we think he’ll have at least three more really good years in him by the time he’s 40.”
Burns’ workout routines have helped him maintain his effectiveness during long shifts. He has averaged 25:35 ice time over the past five regular seasons, ranking second among all NHL skaters, behind only Los Angeles King defenseman Drew Doughty.
“I’m looking forward to coming to a new place where some of my… [training] My habits are probably not the best anymore,” Burns said. “I want to see a new group of people, what they’re doing, what a different team is doing. I’m happy about all that and just adapting and helping.”
Lorentz played two seasons with the Hurricanes, scoring 21 points in 112 games. Makiniemi was a fourth-round draft pick for the Hurricanes in 2017. He played professionally in Finland before joining the Chicago Wolves in the AHL last season.
The 6-0 Pederson, 24, has one goal and five assists in 44 career NHL games.
Burns’ trade opens up valuable cap space for the Sharks, who still have Erik Karlsson ($11.5 million AAV) and Marc-Edouard Vlasic ($7 million AAV) on their salary cap through 2025.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.