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Pending UFAs Staal, Andersen express desire to stay with Hurricanes

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The Hurricanes have a plethora of pending unrestricted free agents, but two of them - captain Jordan Staal and goaltender Frederik Andersen - expressed their intent Friday to remain in Carolina.

"I don't plan on going anywhere," Staal said two days after the Florida Panthers swept the Canes out of the Eastern Conference Final. "Obviously been here long enough, no reason to leave. I'm sure we'll find a way to get a deal done. ... We'll hopefully check off some unfinished business."

He added, "I wanna finish my career off here."

Staal, 34, has been with the Hurricanes since 2012-13 and was named captain in 2019. He just played the final season of a mammoth 10-year, $60-million extension.

The veteran forward put up 17 goals and 17 assists in 81 regular-season games while averaging just over 16 minutes of ice time per contest. Staal added two tallies and six helpers in 15 playoff matchups this spring.

Andersen, who just finished his second season in Raleigh, shared a similar sentiment.

"My priority is to be back here. … I definitely believe in this group. We can do something special next year," he said.

The 33-year-old netminder was limited to 34 appearances in the regular season due to injuries, but he shone in his first taste of the playoffs since 2020.

Andersen went 5-3 this postseason and backstopped the Hurricanes with an impressive .927 save percentage and 1.83 goals-against average. He was unable to participate in the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs because of an MCL tear.

The Dane just wrapped up a two-year, $9-million pact he signed with the Hurricanes as a free agent in July 2021.

Andersen's running mate, Antti Raanta, is set to become an unrestricted free agent as well. Young netminder Pyotr Kochetkov is signed through 2026-27.

Shayne Gostisbehere, Jesper Fast, Paul Stastny, and the injured Max Pacioretty can also test the open market this summer. The Hurricanes have just over $24 million in cap space, according to CapFriendly.

Carolina finished the 2022-23 campaign with the second-best record in the NHL (52-21-9) and made the playoffs for the fifth straight year.

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