Reports that the Hurricanes were looking to bring back both of their pending unrestricted free agent veteran goaltenders didn’t take long to come to fruition on Saturday, as, per first reports from TSN, Frederik Andersen and Antti Raanta will both be back in the fold next season.
The Frederik Andersen contract is reported to be for two years with a $3.4-million AAV, while the Hurricanes have confirmed a one-year, $1.5-million contract for Raanta.
Both goalies signed with the Hurricanes in free agency ahead of the 2021-22 season, and, while this past year was more of a mixed bag, both have mostly played well and been good fits for the team.
In 2022-23, Andersen followed up an up-and-down, injury-plagued regular season with a stellar playoff run, going 5-3-0 with a .927 save percentage and 1.83 goals-against average, playing a key role in the Hurricanes’ run to the Eastern Conference final.
Raanta enjoyed a strong regular season, going 19-3-3, and backstopped most of the team’s first-round series win over the New York Islanders.
This gives the Hurricanes three goalies under contract at the NHL level for this season, with Pyotr Kochetkov’s four-year, $2-million AAV deal set to start. However, Kochetkov remains waiver exempt and can still be sent to the AHL, and, with injuries to both Andersen and Raanta, the Hurricanes have needed to use three goalies at the NHL level in each of the last two seasons.
The team’s official release on Raanta follows:
‘CANES RE-SIGN RAANTA TO ONE-YEAR CONTRACT
Goaltender posted a 19-3-3 record in 2022-23
RALEIGH, N.C. – Don Waddell, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has signed goaltender Antti Raanta to a one-year, $1.5 million contract extension.
“Antti has been excellent for us over the last two seasons,” said Waddell. “He’s been reliable when called upon, and we’re thrilled to bring him back for another year.”
Raanta, 34, registered a 19-3-3 record, 2.23 goals-against average, .910 save percentage and four shutouts in 27 games with the Hurricanes last season, setting a franchise record for single-season points percentage by a goaltender (.820). The Rauma, Finland, native also set a franchise record for longest point streak by a goaltender, posting a 12-0-1 record over 13 decisions from Dec. 17, 2022 to March 3, 2023. Over two seasons in Carolina (2021-23), Raanta has earned a 34-8-7 record, 2.34 goals-against average, .911 save percentage and six shutouts. Raanta and fellow netminder Frederik Andersen became the first goaltending duo in franchise history to win the William M. Jennings Trophy in 2021-22, when Carolina allowed an NHL-low 202 goals against. Raanta has tallied a 127-73-27 record, 2.43 goals-against average, .918 save percentage and 19 shutouts in 253 career NHL games with Chicago, NY Rangers, Arizona and Carolina. The 6’0”, 190-pound goaltender has appeared in 24 career Stanley Cup Playoff games, earning a 9-9 record, 2.48 goals-against average, .911 save percentage and one shutout.