The Carolina Hurricanes are continuing the process of setting their roster for Friday’s opening night, which has in turn continued the process of player movement to and from Charlotte.
The Hurricanes placed veteran defenseman Matt Corrente, who can also play forward, on waivers Tuesday afternoon. Should he clear at noon Wednesday, he is expected to join Charlotte, giving the Checkers nine defensemen on their roster. However, if Ryan Murphy heads back to Carolina as predicted by various reports, that number could quickly revert to eight. Murphy did not practice with the Checkers on Tuesday.
Corrente, a 25-year-old, first-round pick of the New Jersey Devils in 2006, signed a two-way contract with Carolina over the summer. He spent each of the last two seasons in the AHL with Albany but was limited to just 50 total games due to injuries from which he has since recovered. Known for his grit, as evidenced by his fight and two roughing minors in a single preseason game at Montreal on Sept. 22 and the time he made a considerable effort to return for an insignificant portion of a Hurricanes practice after taking a puck to the face last week, he has 350 penalty minutes in 163 career AHL games.
Corrente has also played 24 career NHL games, all with the Devils, recording six assists and 68 penalty minutes.
A sixth-year pro, Corrente, if used at the position, would further bolster a Checkers defense that suddenly has a glut of experience to balance out an incoming youth movement. With Corrente likely to fit into the team’s top four along with Mark Flood, Michal Jordan and Rasmus Rissanen, two opening-night spots will be available for the group of Danny Biega, Austin Levi, Keegan Lowe and Beau Schmitz.
Corrente’s pending assignment would leave the Checkers with 26 players, including Murphy, ahead of Friday’s regular-season opener at Oklahoma City. That group breaks down to two goaltenders, nine defensemen (including Corrente) and 15 forwards.