Ramblings: Hamilton’s future; Farabee; Gallant; Johns retires; Vegas takes Game 1 – June 15

Michael Clifford

2021-06-15

This is a big offseason for the Carolina Hurricanes for a number of reasons. First up is just the magnitude of their UFAs/RFAs. They have all three goalies up for contracts – Mrazek and Reimer as UFA and Nedeljkovic as RFA – Jake Bean as an RFA, Andrei Svechnikov as an RFA, as well as a bevy of UFA bottom-6 guys. At the least, Nedeljkovic, Bean, and Svechnikov are all significant pieces of this team's future, so there is a lot of work to be done.

One name is missing from that list, and it's UFA Dougie Hamilton. Elliotte Friedman with the latest:

Out of the gate: the reason for a sign-and-trade would be so a team can sign him for eight years instead of seven. What is that extra year worth to a team? It shouldn't be much, if anything, but the option is there. It feels to me like the Hurricanes are grasping a bit at straws here because they want to get something rather than nothing for a significant asset they're about to lose. One cannot blame others for grasping at straws when there aren't much better options available.

But it does seem like this is the end of Hamilton's tenure in Carolina, which is a shame all around. He was a great fit on that team and he is not replaceable. They might bring in other players or have young guys make a jump, but there were basically three straight seasons with Hamilton performing at a Norris-calibre level. Whatever player they sign, whatever rookie makes a jump, that is something that is just not replaceable.

So where does Hamilton go? Let us assume a sign-and-trade is something that happens here. (Personally, I feel as if this is unlikely as even though we won't be in a flat-cap situation in 4-5 years when Hamilton really starts aging as there are a lot of teams still with tight purse strings now.) I cannot imagine there'll be a significant bidding war here outside of maybe the half-dozen teams that can have legitimate interest, either due to assets or cap space.

Where are some potential landing spots? Here are a few that come to mind.

The first team that jumped out is Los Angeles. I guess they're the team that always jumps out but they're in the unique situation of having both a lot of cap space and an up-and-coming team that needs elite players all over the roster. All that said, it is probably not the wisest move to lock up