Carolina Hurricanes acquire Kotkaniemi from Montreal

Carolina Hurricanes

Montreal Canadiens centre Jesperi Kotkaniemi (15) leaps to try to deflect a shot in front of Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Carter Hart (79) during third period NHL Eastern Conference Stanley Cup first round playoff hockey action in Toronto, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — After Montreal did not match an offer sheet, the Carolina Hurricanes Saturday announced they acquired forward Jesperi Kotkaniemi.

A week ago, the Hurricanes got Kotkaniemi to sign an offer sheet. It’s a one-year, $6.1 million deal that the Canadiens didn’t match on Saturday.

Carolina is now getting a really good young player with a tremendous upside.

Kotkaniemi signed a one-year contract with Carolina, which pays a salary of $6.1 million for the 2021-22 season and carries a $20 signing bonus, the Carolina Hurricanes announced in a news release Saturday.

“Jesperi Kotkaniemi is a player who has been on our radar since before his draft year,” Don Waddell, president and general manager of the Hurricanes said in the news release. “We believe he will flourish in Rod Brind’Amour’s system and culture, and he will be an important piece of what we are building in Carolina for years to come.”

The Montreal Canadiens declined to match the offer and will receive a first-round pick and a third-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft as compensation from the Hurricanes.

Montreal is cash-strapped and the feeling was the Canadiens would not match the offer, allowing the former third overall pick to become a Hurricane.

Now that the Canes have the young center it will give them another option at middle ice although Kotkaniemi will most likely be slotted to play forward in Carolina.

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