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Francis: 'We're Still Having a Lot of Talks'

Canes GM looking to add a piece up front

by Michael Smith @MSmithCanes /

Visit for the latest news, videos and pick-by-pick information in the 2017 NHL Draft.

CHICAGO - At the outset of the offseason, Carolina Hurricanes Executive Vice President and General Manager Ron Francis identified aspects of the team needing improvement.

One was goaltending, and the team checked that off the list not even a month into the offseason with the trade and subsequent signing of Scott Darling. Another aspect was stabilizing the third defensive pair, and the Canes acquisition of Trevor van Riemsdyk this week helps in that regard.

The final aspect: bolstering the forward corps with top-six talent. After the first round of the 2017 NHL Draft, Francis said talks are ongoing.

"If we could add another piece up front, we're open to doing that. We're still having a lot of talks," he said. "Hopefully if we get something that we like we can do that tomorrow."

Video: #CanesDraft: Ron Francis Media Availability

The Hurricanes currently have seven picks to play with on the second day of the draft, including two picks in each the second and third rounds. There was some speculation that the Hurricanes would move their 12th overall pick to acquire an asset that can bolster the team's lineup in the more immediate future. That such transaction never materialized.

"We've been in trade talks for all of our picks. At the end of the day, you've got to look at the value of what you're getting versus what you might be able to take," Francis said. "For where we are and what we're building, there wasn't anything that we felt comfortable giving up pick No. 12 for prior to making the selection."

With the 12th overall pick, the Hurricanes selected Czech center Martin Necas.

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