The Carolina Hurricanes and Martin Necas have agreed to a two-year, $6million contract to keep the young winger with the franchise through the 2023-24 season.

Necas had been a restricted free agent.

Selected 12th overall by the Hurricanes in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, Necas has totalled 119 points (45 goals, 74 assists) in 203 career games.

At 23 years old, Necas is considered a key piece for Carolina's future. He tallied 14 goals and 26 assists last season but managed just five assists in 14 Stanley Cup playoff games.

After the New York Rangers eliminated the Hurricanes in Game 7 of the second round, Necas said he wanted to be a more consistent scoring threat in the future.

"I've got to help the team more, got to produce way more,” Necas said in June. "That's what everyone kind of expects from me. I didn't do it this year, so like I said, it was disappointing for me."

Carolina won the Metropolitan Division last season with a 54-20-8 record.

The Carolina Hurricanes have completed a trade with the San Jose Sharks for defenseman Brent Burns.

The six-time All-Star was expected to be moved this week, with both the Hurricanes and the Dallas Stars said to be interested.

And the Canes soon confirmed Burns was dealt on a busy Wednesday in the NHL as free agency opened.

Former Norris Trophy winner Burns is heading to Carolina, along with AHL forward Lane Pederson, while the Sharks receive forward Steven Lorentz, AHL goalie Eetu Makiniemi and a conditional 2023 third-round pick.

Burns has three years left on his contract with an average annual value of $8million, although the Sharks have retained a third of his cap hit.

"Brent has been an elite offensive defenseman in the NHL for a long time," said Canes president and general manager Don Waddell.

"He has produced at a consistent level throughout his career, and we believe adding him brings us closer to our goal of winning the Stanley Cup."

The New York Rangers triumphed 6-2 away from home in Game 7 against the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday, securing their spot in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

It is the second consecutive series that the Rangers have had to come from behind in – coming back from a 3-1 deficit to defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3, before falling behind 3-2 against the Hurricanes and winning back-to-back games with their season on the line.

For a Game 7, it was relatively painless for New York, with first-period strikes to Adam Fox and Chris Kreider, before a Ryan Strome goal made it 3-0 Rangers at the end of the second period as goaltender Igor Shesterkin proved impenetrable early.

With the Hurricanes desperate for an early one in the third term, Kreider stuck the dagger in with his second goal to make it 4-0. Carolina finally got their first goal eight minutes into the last period through Vincent Trocheck, but any dream of a comeback was extinguished less than a minute later by Filip Chytil's reply.

Kreider, after scoring twice, was quick to pass the spotlight to who he felt was the match-winner, and highlighted how his Rangers refuse to lie down.

"Obviously, our goaltender [Shesterkin] was once again our best player," he said.

"I've kind of referred to us as cockroaches. We just didn't go away. 

"That's always been ingrained in the culture of every good team I've been on here. We just don't go away, regardless of the score and regardless of where the game is."

Also praising Shesterkin, Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said: "He made some key saves at key times – he made that 2-0 lead in the first period stand up."

Shesterkin himself said the early lead took the pressure off, and looked forward to his match-up against compatriot Andrei Vasilevskiy in net for the back-to-back Stanley Cup Champions, the Tampa Bay Lightning.

"We scored two quick goals and it helped me so much,' he said. "I just tried to [do] my job – stop the puck.

"[Vasilevskiy] is the best goalie in the world right now. I think it'll be a good battle."

Speaking to ESPN while still on the ice, Fox touched on the toughness of his side after now moving to 5-0 in elimination games this postseason.

"I think we're a resilient group," he said. "We're a young group, we have a lot of faith in each other in there, and when our backs are against the wall it seems like it brings out the best in us.

"These past two games have been a full-team effort, it took everyone to contribute, and I couldn't be prouder of the team.

"Maybe we're a little naive in there – we're just coming to play. We've got a young group, but guys who have been through it, too. 

"We don't want our season to end, and I think we just go in with that mentality, and its worked for us the past two [Game 7s]."

When asked about the impending matchup against the Lightning, Fox said he will not lose much sleep over his side's rest disadvantage.

"I'm not sure to be honest – obviously [the Lightning] getting a little rest is good for their guys, but we're in hockey mode," he said. "We're in playoff mode, and we want to keep the momentum rolling.

"It could be good for us, but obviously a good test as well."

New York Rangers goal-tender Igor Shesterkin was the talk of the town after stopping 37 shots and providing two assists in their 5-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 6 of their NHL second round playoffs series.

The Rangers forced a Game 7 in the series as they continued their excellent home form buoyed by a strong start, winning their sixth straight game at Madison Square Garden.

Tyler Motte and Mika Zibanejad scored in the first period to earn Rangers a 2-0 lead with Filip Chytil netting two goals in the second. Artemi Panarin added another in the third period to close out the victory.

But Shesterkin earned praise from Rangers head coach Gerard Gallant after becoming only the fifth goalie in NHL history to have two or more assists in a playoff game.

"He made some real key saves for us," Gallant told reporters.

"Obviously the two assists are huge, but I think he was trying to get three there in the third when he passed it up the middle.

"He's outstanding. He's been like that all year for us."

Shesterkin now has three assists in 13 postseason games, setting up Zibanejad's first-period goal, along with Chytil's second.

"About the two assists, honestly, I think it was mostly the guys that did all the work," Shesterkin said via a translator. "I just got them the puck and they delivered."

Gallant was delighted with Rangers' home form, stating it did not surprise him, but the series-deciding Game 7 will be played in Carolina where the Hurricanes are 7-0 in this postseason.

"We have to play how we play at home," Chytil said.

"We found a way to win in Pittsburgh. It's a Game 7 now, so we have to find a way to win the game.

"We have to play hard, we have to play our game and don't focus on any other thing. Just focus on the game and I think we can win the game.”"

Hurricanes head coach Rod Brind'Amour admitted his side started too "raw" but was eager to move on with Game 7 on Monday.

"It's behind us now, we turn the page," Brind'Amour said. "The good news is we don't have to end on that. We have another shot here."

The New York Rangers are feeling confident about their prospects of reaching the NHL Stanley Cup Finals after fighting back from 2-0 to square their series with the Carolina Hurricanes, earning a 4-1 win on Tuesday.

The Hurricanes have had the wood over the Rangers in recent times, winning eight out of their previous nine encounters prior to the past two meetings in this heated series.

Rangers center Andrew Copp, who scored a goal with two assists in the Game 4 win, said the momentum was with his side after winning 3-1 in Game 3.

"We're confident," Copp told reporters. "We get two games where we win, we play well, we give up two goals total.

"Now the reverse of the talk of you guys is on them now. We just got to kind of block all that out and stay with our game.

"Guys are feeling better about themselves and we got to ride this momentum into Carolina."

Rangers goal tender Igor Shesterkin stopped 30 shots but had his shutout bid spoiled by Teuvo Teravainen's third-period goal.

Earlier, goals to Frank Vatrano and Adam Fox earned the Rangers a 2-0 first-period lead, with Mika Zibanejad extending that advantage 16:48 into the second. Teravainen made it 3-1 before Copp rounded it out from Ryan Strome's assist 11:10 in the third period.

Rangers head coach Gerard Gallant was delighted with his team's display after a tight series, where the Hurricanes won Game 1 in over-time 2-1, before triumphing 2-0 in Game 2.

"Really, you look at the four games," Gallant said. "It's not just the two at home, but the four games have been pretty much one-goal games most of the way through.

"We are two teams that are close and battling. I just think it's been outstanding hockey by both teams."

The result means the Hurricanes are 0-5 on the road in the playoffs, while they are 6-0 at home ahead of Game 5 in Carolina.

Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour said: "You've got to keep getting the chances. I'm happy that we're at least creating some offense.

"[Shesterkin] played well, you've got to give him tons of credit. But to me, the start is what did it to us."

Elsewhere, the Edmonton Oilers took a 3-1 lead in their second round series against the Calgary Flames, winning 5-3 in Game 4 after blowing a 3-0 first-period lead.

New York Rangers coach Gerard Gallant assured his side can match the Carolina Hurricanes for physicality following a post-game scuffle, as the Rangers took a game back in their playoff series on Sunday.

As the buzzer sounded to end Game 3, a 3-1 win for the Rangers, Hurricanes forward Max Domi gave Rangers defenceman Ryan Lindgren a sudden cross-check.

The benches cleared and following the scuffle between the two teams on the ice, Gallant was also seen yelling at Hurricanes defenceman Tony DeAngelo, whose contract was bought out by the Rangers after a string of behavioural indiscretions.

While Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour declined to comment on the issue post-match - citing that he did not see the shot from Domi - a visibly upset Gallant was more forthright, stating the Rangers are well-equipped to provide receipts.

“I wasn’t happy with the bulls..t at the end of the game that they initiated,” Gallant said. “We didn’t do that when the games were close. They put their guys out, that’s fine. They want to play like that, we've got guys who can match that.”

After two losses on the road, the Rangers bounced back with an important win as the series returned to New York.

Mika Zibanejad had a goal and an assist while Igor Shesterkin stopped 43 shots, for New York's second win in their past 10 against the Canes.

Message-sending is the norm in playoff series but after the post-game scuffle, Gallant made it clear his side will not be pushed around.

“I don’t like it at the end of the game,” he said. “The game’s over. We still got four games with these guys. We got the guy who can handle all their guys if we want to.

"We didn’t do it like that, but Domi took a cheap shot at our defenceman. You've got a long memory. You think about things, like I said, [the shoe] might be on the other foot someday.”

New York Rangers coach Gerard Gallant feels like there was not much more his side could do after falling down 2-0 in their series, losing both of the Carolina Hurricanes' home fixtures.

After leading until the final moments of Game 1, before the Hurricanes forced overtime and snuck away with a 2-1 win, it was another defensive struggle in Game 2, which suited the Hurricanes as they took it 2-0.

The breakthrough came from Brendan Smith in the second period, and that would be the only goal of the game until the Rangers pulled their goalie out of desperation in the final seconds.

Speaking to post-game media, Gallant said it was a true playoff hockey game, but despite only scoring one goal in two games, he feels his side played well once again.

"It was a good hockey game – low shots, a battle by both teams," he said. "It could've went either way again.

"It's tough – we came into this building earlier in the season twice and got dominated, [Carolina had] 50 shots I think.

"But we came in here, we played good defensive hockey, we battled hard. We only got one goal [across the two away games], that's the disappointing part of it, but we played a good hockey team, and played good hockey.

"We fell short a little bit – what are you going to do. Just get ready for the two home games coming up."

Gallant pushed back on the notion that his side is "disjointed" offensively, saying this is just what it looks like when the two best defensive teams in the league meet head-to-head.

"I wouldn't say [we are disjointed offensively] – I would say it's a case of two teams not giving up anything," he said.

"They're first in the league [defensively] and we're second in the league, but the disappointment is that we didn't take care of our power plays tonight. 

"Overall it's a top team, and it was a battle of a game. They're a good team – the best defensive team in the league.

"I'm happy with the way we've performed overall. I wish we would've got one of these two games – we probably could've – but that's the way it goes."

Goal-scorer Smith said everyone knows what kind of game it is going to be between these two sides, but he feels it favours Carolina.

“I think if we just stick to our style, it's eventually going to wear on teams and we're going to find a way to win,” he said.

The Carolina Hurricanes needed a late equaliser to send Game 1 of their playoff series against the New York Rangers to overtime, where they would score the golden goal to win 2-1 in front of their home fans.

Filip Chytil put the Rangers ahead in the first period with his goal from an Alexis Lafreniere assist as they tried to pinch Game 1 on the road.

Behind another stout goaltending performance from Rangers star Igor Shesterkin, the 1-0 scoreline would hold all the way through the second period and deep into the last, when Sebastian Aho finally found the equaliser with less than three minutes left on the clock.

After Carolina fans waited nearly an hour of game time for their first goal, they only had to wait three minutes into overtime to get their second, as Ian Cole landed an optimistic shot past Shesterkin the winner.

Just his second goal in 104 postseason games, Cole said shooting was not on his mind when he received the puck.

"I was looking to pass it to someone," he said. "No one was really kind of anywhere dangerous – so I was like, 'Well, I guess I'll throw it on net and see what happens'.

"Hockey's a game of weird bounces, and it happened to go in. Not the prettiest, but we'll take it."

Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour was proud of his side pulling through the way they did, but he acknowledged it felt like they got out of jail.

"Kudos to our guys, they got it going in – it certainly was a good third period," he said.

"[But] we're not going to get away with that. Not playing two periods and expect to win a game — especially at this time of year against that team.”

Rangers coach Gerard Gallant felt his team did not get the reward for their play, going as far as saying their first two periods were as good as they had played all season.

"They put a big push on in the third period in the first 10 minutes, and we weathered that storm," he said.

"But the first two periods was perfect hockey for us... I thought it was our best game of the year, I really did."

Game 2 will remain in Carolina on Friday before heading to Madison Square Garden in New York for Game 3 and Game 4.

Nick Paul scored twice, including a stunning individual goal late in the second period, as the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 2-1 in Game 7 on Saturday.

The two-time defending Stanley Cup champions came from a goal down in the previous two games, and had to do it again on the road at the Scotiabank Arena after Thursday's overtime win to level the series.

Morgan Reilly scored for Toronto but Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped an eventual 29 shots to keep the Lightning in the game, before Paul's brace secured the series win.

The Leafs were condemned to their seventh consecutive playoff series loss, and have not made the second round since 2004. After the match, Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe commended the reigning champions on their series win.

"They [Tampa Bay] don’t get a lot of credit because you don’t really think of them this way, but we knew coming into this series that going into third periods down against this team was going to be a challenge," he said post-game.

"They are the number-one team in the NHL when it comes to limiting chances against when up a goal in the third period. All regular season, they were that.

"That is sort of the hallmark of their success. That is championship hockey. They didn’t give us a great deal in that third period tonight. Those are the things I take away - just how hard they defend and how they prioritise defending."

In Saturday's other results, the Carolina Hurricanes won their series-deciding game at home to the Boston Bruins 3-2, while the Edmonton Oilers claimed Game 7 against the Los Angeles Kings with a 2-0 win.

Brayden Point scored the winning goal in overtime and forced a Game 7, as the Tampa Bay Lightning secured a thrilling 4-3 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday.

Ondrej Palat, Anthony Cirelli and Nikita Kucherov also scored for the reigning Stanley Cup champions, but they had to battle until 1:56 remaining in overtime for Point's sealer.

The Lightning had to fight their way back from 3-2 down in the final period with their season on the line, after Leafs captain John Tavares scored twice in the second period's closing 34 seconds.

With his side dropping a lead for the second straight game, Tavares said the focus is now on regrouping as the series heads back to Toronto for the decider.

"We worked hard all year to earn home ice and we've got a great opportunity going home in front of our fans to try to close this thing out," he said.

"So just regroup here, and look forward to the opportunity. This is what the game's all about."

The Boston Bruins also forced a Game 7 after they defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 5-2, while the St. Louis Blues advanced to the second round, beating the Minnesota Wild 5-1 in Game 6.

In Thursday's final game, the Edmonton Oilers evened their series up with the Los Angeles Kings in Game 6, winning 4-2.

Auston Matthews says his game-winner was "pretty special" after the Toronto Maple Leafs battled back from two goals down to win 4-3 over the Tampa Bay Lightning in the NHL playoffs on Tuesday.

The Maple Leafs trailed 2-0 after the first period but rallied with Matthews settling the contest with their third goal in the third period.

The win means Toronto lead 3-2 in the best-of-seven series against the reigning Stanley Cup champions.

"It was pretty special," Matthews told reporters, speaking about the goal. "To battle back from down two goals, and never losing hope and competing, that was big."

Matthews led the NHL across the regular season with 60 goals but he had not scored in the playoffs since Game 1 of the series.

Teammate John Tavares, who pulled one back during the second-period power play, praised the NHL's back-to-back Rocket Richard Trophy winner Matthews, who was also credited with seven hits.

"His whole game is all just really good," Tavares said. "When you score 60 goals, that's going to get [discussed], and how he scores it in different ways and the uniqueness of his shot in his abilities, but his all-around game is as good as anybody's in the league.

"He's going to play hard and compete because they're making it hard on him to earn his ice and opportunities, so good for him to play them hard."

The victory means Toronto are one win away from the franchise's first playoff series victory since 2004.

"I just think we needed to possess the puck a little bit more," Matthews said. "Get on top of them and be forechecking and not giving them as much time and space. We were on top of them and had our heads up to make plays."

Elsewhere, Adrian Kempe's over-time goal earned the Los Angeles Kings a 5-4 win over the Edmonton Oilers, having blown a 3-1 lead.

The goal was Kempe's second of the game, as he finished with a three-point performance. The result puts the Kings up 3-2 in the series.

The Carolina Hurricanes also moved up 3-2 in their series against the Boston Bruins with an emphatic 5-1 win after losing their past two.

Rookie Seth Jarvis scored twice and Antti Raanta finished with 34 saves.

The St Louis Blues piled on three third-period goals, all from a Vladimir Tarasenko hat-trick, to secure a 5-2 win over the Minnesota Wild to lead their series 3-2.

Tony DeAngelo saved special praise for rookie goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov after the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Boston Bruins 5-2 on Wednesday.

Kochetkov was thrust into the spotlight for his playoff debut as the Hurricanes took a 2-0 lead in what is becoming a fiery series.

With Frederik Andersen already down, tempers boiled over as the Canes had to turn to Kochetkov after Antti Raanta was struck in the head by David Pastrnak's glove as he skated past.

The two teams traded words and big hits throughout, and defenseman DeAngelo made it clear where the Hurricanes stand with the Bruins in this series.

"We're not going to get pushed around, I guarantee you that," he said.

DeAngelo was glowing of Kochetkov's demeanour after the first-period change and his ability to keep it simple in a heated environment, making 30 saves.

"I think he's real calm," his team-mate said. "You don't see any jitters, at least in my eyes. I don't know what he's feeling inside. I'm sure he's a little nervous. Anybody would be, right?

"But I thought he was real calm in the net. He made a lot of saves, wasn't trying to do too much. He was calm. Coming into goal in the first period in a playoff game as a rookie after coming here a few weeks ago, he was really good."

Elsewhere on Wednesday, the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Minnesota Wild tied up their respective series against the Toronto Maple Leafs and the St. Louis Blues with wins.

The Edmonton Oilers also tied up their series, smashing the Los Angeles Kings in a 6-0 shutout.

The NHL's leading goal-scorer and MVP candidate Auston Matthews slotted home two more in the Toronto Maple Leafs' 5-0 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 1 of their playoff series.

Matthews – who is first player since 2011-12 to score 60 goals in a season – got on the scoresheet early in the second period to make it 2-0 for Toronto after Jake Muzzin's opener to close the first frame.

Mitchell Marner assisted the first Matthews goal and also set up David Kampf to make it 3-0, before he got on the scoresheet himself to make it four, capping off a brilliant second period.

Matthews scored his second goal of the game to round out the rout in the last period, with Morgan Reilly collecting his second assist in the process.

Speaking to post-game media, Matthews gave plenty of credit to the Maple Leafs' penalty-killing unit after the Lightning failed to score from five power-play attempts, as well as his running-mate Marner.

"I thought we played fast, we played through the contact," he said. "Our penalty-kill [unit] was huge tonight, I thought that brought us a lot of momentum.

"I thought [Marner] was incredible. He was all over the puck – so much poise – he's just doing his thing out there. 

"It's fun to watch, and fun to be out there with him. I know he's going to continue to elevate, so we've got to look for everybody to do that as well.

"We were able to capitalise on some chances, so I thought it was a really good effort by us. But it's a series – it's going to be a long series – and there's a really good team on the other end. 

"They'll be ready to go next game, so we've got to watch this one, learn from it, and move on to the next one."

Matthews also highlighted the energy inside the building as the Toronto crowd tries to will their team to their first series win since 2004.

"It was humming here tonight," he said. "It was just electric through all 60 minutes.

"I think that's what playoff hockey is all about, the atmosphere and everything. 

"It's been a while since we've been in front of our fans in front of a full arena in the playoffs, so there's a lot of excitement, and the guys fed off the energy."

It was a similarly dominant showing for the Carolina Hurricanes, as they beat the Boston Bruins 5-1 at home.

There were five individual goal-scorers for the Hurricanes as Seth Jarvis, Nino Niederreiter, Teuvo Teravainen, Vincent Trocheck and Andrei Svechnikov put in one each.

The St Louis Blues collected an important road win against the Minnesota Wild, scoring twice in the opening period on the way to a 4-0 result.

David Perron was the man of the hour for the Blues, capping off his hat-trick with the final goal of the game, while Torey Krug had three assists.

The most competitive game of the night was the Los Angeles Kings' trip to take on the Edmonton Oilers, escaping with a 4-3 road win.

After two action-packed periods the sides were tied at 3-3 going into the last, with a late Phillip Danault goal proving to be the difference.

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