RALEIGH, NC - Don Waddell, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League's Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has signed goaltenders Pyotr Kochetkov and Eetu Makiniemi to two-year, entry-level contracts. At the NHL level, the deal will pay Kochetkov $842,500 for both seasons. The deal will pay Kochetkov $70,000 at the American Hockey League (AHL) level for both seasons, and he will receive a signing bonus of $185,000. At the NHL level, Makiniemi's deal will pay him $842,500 in 2021-22 and $892,500 in 2022-23. Makiniemi will earn $70,000 at the American Hockey League (AHL) level for both seasons, and he will receive a signing bonus of $185,000.
"Pyotr and Eetu each had strong seasons playing in two of the top European leagues," said Waddell. "We're excited for both goalies to take the next steps in their development."
Kochetkov, 21, played 10 Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) games with Vityaz and Nizhny Novgorod in 2020-21, posting a 2-5-1 record with a 2.65 goals-against average, .924 save percentage and one shutout. In two playoff appearances for Nizhny Novgorod, he went 0-1-0 with a 2.48 goals-against average and .932 save percentage. The 6'3", 205-pound goaltender is 6-15-1 with a 2.75 goals-against average, .914 save percentage and one shutout in 26 career KHL games with Nizhny Novgorod, Vityaz, St. Petersburg and Sochi from 2018-21. This season, Kochetkov also played five games for Ryazan in the VHL, Russia's second league, with a 1-3-1 record, 2.46 goals-against average and .904 save percentage. The Kazan, Russia, native helped his home country to a bronze medal at the 2019 IIHF World Junior Championship and was named Best Goaltender at the tournament after posting a 4-1 record with a 1.45 goals-against average and .953 save percentage. Kochetkov was drafted by the Hurricanes in the second round, 36th overall, of the 2019 NHL Draft.
Makiniemi, 22, appeared in 34 Liiga games with Ilves in 2020-21, earning a 13-14-7 record with a 2.59 goals-against average, .907 save percentage and two shutouts. He also went 1-4-0 with a 3.02 goals-against average and .915 save percentage in five playoff games. The 6'2", 176-pound goaltender has posted a 15-14-11 record, 2.43 goals-against average, .911 save percentage and two shutouts in 41 career Liiga games with Ilves. In 2019-20, Makiniemi was named Best Goaltender and selected to the Second All-Star Team of Mestis, Finland's second league, after finishing second in save percentage (.908), third in wins (14) and sixth in goals-against average (3.01) in 26 games with KOOVEE. He registered a 18-11-10 record, 2.99 goals-against average, .907 save percentage and two shutouts in 39 career Mestis games with KOOVEE and Kiekko-Vantaa from 2018-20. The Vantaa, Finland, native was drafted by the Hurricanes in the fourth round, 104th overall, of the 2017 NHL Draft.