The Next Four Days are Going to be Incredibly Busy for the Hurricanes' Front Office

Friday through Monday promises to be jam-packed with news and moves as the draft and free agency signal the beginning of a new hockey season.
New York Rangers v Carolina Hurricanes - Game Four
New York Rangers v Carolina Hurricanes - Game Four / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages
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For most people, the next four days will merely be four more days on the calendar. For hockey fans, this is like Christmas in the summer. Things are about to get crazy, with the 2024 NHL Entry Draft set to begin on Friday and free agency right around the corner on Monday. The next four days are going to be busy for everyone, but especially for the Hurricanes, as we'll start to see the 2024-25 Carolina Hurricanes take shape.

The Carolina Hurricanes currently own the 27th pick of the first round on Friday night, but there's a chance they could add another pick if reports of a Martin Necas trade are accurate. While there are many teams interested in the services of the Hurricanes' restricted free agent, it is being suggested that New Jersey could be willing to part with the tenth overall pick for Necas.

Since the Hurricanes were eliminated from the playoffs, the idea of a Martin Necas trade has felt more like a forgone conclusion than a rumor. Necas' production dipped last season after hitting 70 points for the first time in his career in 2022-23. Talks surrounding him being traded seem to circle every offseason, but things feel a little more legitimate now.

If New Jersey does opt to trade for him, I struggle to see how it isn't a fit. Much like Necas, the Devils are young and fast. Giving him a chance to play next to Jack Hughes could make them even more dangerous offensively. The only thing I wouldn't like about a deal with the Devils is that it keeps Necas in the division. Another team in the mix appears to be the Buffalo Sabres. The Sabres made a deal with San Jose on Thursday to move from the 11th pick to the 14th pick in the first round on Friday, so maybe they will look to move that pick as well for Necas.

A potential Necas deal isn't the only thing to keep an eye on this weekend. The Hurricanes will be welcoming in a new crop of rookies during Friday and Saturday's draft. The team currently holds nine picks, owning all seven of their own, as well as Ottawa and Toronto's sixth-round picks. Who the Hurricanes will take in the first round remains a mystery, no matter how many mock drafts you look at. I also wouldn't be surprised to see them trade out of the first round, something we've seen them do a few times in recent memory.

The free agent frenzy kicks off on Monday, but there is still time for the team to negotiate with their pending free agents and their representatives. The Canes have a large crop of pending restricted and unrestricted free agents this summer, even after extending Jalen Chatfield a few weeks ago. Brett Pesce and Brady Skjei will be highly sought after by many teams, as will Teuvo Teravainen, but the biggest fish will be the man the Canes acquired at the trade deadline, Jake Guentzel. Reports have been swirling for days that Carolina is making a push to keep him, but that's far from guaranteed.

Another player due for a large payday is Seth Jarvis. The first-time 30-goal-scorer is a restricted free agent for the first time, so while the team still holds his rights, Jarvis could sign an offer sheet elsewhere if he so chooses. Honestly, I don't see that happening. Jarvis is far too valuable of a player for the Hurricanes, so I'd hope they wouldn't let it get that far. I would expect a long-term extension to be ironed out sooner rather than later. Maybe they'll announce it on Monday, along with Jaccob Slavin's extension.

The next 98 hours are going to be incredible to watch. After Macklin Celebrini goes first overall to the Sharks on Friday, no one knows what to expect. The chaos is going to be fast and furious as contenders try to remain that way while the teams on the outside try to find a way to play among the powerhouses. This is going to be an offseason full of surprises, especially for the Hurricanes. All we can do now is go along for the ride as Eric Tulsky and the front office lead us into the future.