Sharks sign Sturm, Nutivaara, Benning in free agency


The Sharks had a busy first day of free agency.

In the morning, they traded franchise pillar Brent Burns, along with Lane Pederson, to the Carolina Hurricanes for fourth-line forward Steven Lorentz, goalie prospect Eetu Makiniemi, and a conditional 2023 third-round pick.

The Sharks agreed to retain 34 percent of the 37-year-old Burns’s remaining contract, creating about $5.3 million dollars of cap space in each of the next three years. The third-round pick is the worse of the Hurricanes’ two next year, Carolina and Philadelphia’s.

Burns is irreplaceable in the hearts of Sharks fans, and possibly, on the ice. The “Wookie” led Sharks defensemen with 54 points and all NHL skaters in minutes played this past season.

It’s not a great package, by any means, for a player of Burns’s stature and caliber, but you have to consider that the long-time Shark was ready to leave to chase a Stanley Cup, and his contract, considering his age, is a sizable risk for any team to take on.

RELATED: Burns recaps emotional trade to Hurricanes, conversation with Grier

The Sharks followed up by signing UFAs Oskar Lindblom (two years, $2.5 mil AAV), Nico Sturm (three years, $2 mil AAV), Markus Nutivaara (one year, $1.75 mil AAV), and Matt Benning (four years, $1.25 mil AAV).

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