The Buffalo Sabres announced on Monday that the team has agreed with defenseman Justin Falk to a one -year, $650,000 contract extension.
Falk, 28, has played in 35 games with the Sabres this season registering four assists.
During his career, Falk has appeared in 206 games with the Sabres, Rangers, Blue Jackets and Wild.
This extension is about two things:
1-- Falk has played well when called upon. He's not flashy and he doesn't provide much offensively, but he's played a solid game in his own end, especially for someone who didn't start the year in the N.H.L. Falk has been asked to do a lot with so many injuries on the blue line and he's done a nice job.
2 -- The one-way extension doesn't kick in until next year, but if Falk plays five more games this season (40 games) he'll be eligible for the expansion draft. Essentially, from the way that I understand things, signing Falk now gives the Sabres more options when it comes to the players the organization chooses to expose. Every team has two options: they can either protect:
A) seven forwards, three defensemen, and a goaltender
B) eight total skaters and a goaltender
Falk is 5 gms shy of the 40/70 req. Coupled with his Ext, it would give BUF 5 D who meet exposure req, & some flexibility to possibly go 8/1
— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) February 6, 2017
So why do this now if you're General Manager Tim Murray? It gives the organization flexibility if they want to make more moves at the trade deadline. Assuming Falk plays five more games, the Sabres could expose five defenders in the expansion draft, allowing them chose option B.
I still don't know what option the Sabres will select, it's too early to say. This move doesn't cost them much but could make things easier for them this summer.