Now, we get to the name that most people would expect to see. In recent years, Justin Faulk has drawn a lot of criticism, some of which was well-earned. In 2018-19, Faulk improved his defensive play and posted the best plus-minus rating of his career.
Faulk’s offensive acumen has counted on for years, but last year’s acquisition of Dougie Hamilton helps ease that reliance. Add to that the point-producing strides that both Jaccob Slavin and Brett Pesce have made, and the likelihood that Jake Bean sees ice time this season, and the thought of not having Faulk don’t hurt as much as in years past.
And, with an eye to the future, there’s this:
Oddly enough, it was reported back in June that there was a potential deal in place that would see Faulk shipped to the Washington Capitals in exchange for the rights to Chase Priskie, a 2016 Capitals draft pick who never signed with the organization. Washington GM Brian MacLellan denied these rumors when asked by NHL.com’s Tom Gulitti.
Around that time, word leaked that negotiations with Faulk had taken a less than favorable turn. Should this continue into the season, Faulk could be a very interesting trade chip. Once the season is in full swing and we get a better picture of what this team needs (along with Faulk’s remaining salary becoming more appetizing to opposing teams), the likelihood of a move increases.
There is, however, a snag that could limit the return of any potential trades. It’s no secret that former Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford is a fan of no-movement clauses when handing out contracts. While Faulk’s current deal doesn’t include a full no-trade clause, it does include a modified one that kicked in last season. This stipulates that Faulk is allowed to submit a list of 15 teams that he would accept a trade to.
Granted, this doesn’t mean that Faulk can’t agree to waive that clause but he has a certain amount of control in where he moves if he moves at all.
At the end of the day, none of these players may change teams this season. It’s August, and speculation is the name of the game.
Who do you think has the highest likelihood of being shipped out?