The Philadelphia Flyers continue to surprise just about everyone with a never-ending spree of moves and a seemingly endless pool of salary cap space. On Thursday morning, the team announced that forward Joel Farabee has signed a six-year contract extension worth $5M AAV.
Just 21-years old, Farabee will now be a Flyer through the 2027-2028 season, with the contract extension kicking in at the beginning of the 2022-23 campaign. This removes immediate salary cap pressure and means that Chuck Fletcher can jump the gun before Farabee explodes north of a price tag that the Flyers could afford.
Farabee had a promising rookie season in the NHL, but he slayed the sophomore slump in impressive fashion, potting 12 more goals than he did in 2019 and becoming the second youngest Flyer of all time to lead the team in scoring (20 goals). The youngest is none other than Eric Lindros.
17 of Farabee’s goals came at even-strength, which also led the Flyers and actually ranked him inside the top-15 across the league. This surge in form helped him earn the 2020-21 Pelle Lindbergh Memorial Trophy as the “Most Improved Flyer” as voted for by his teammates. Through two years, Farabee has appeared in 107 games and already notched 59 points (28g-21a).
The team has undergone quite the transformation this offseason and there has been a real focus to find cornerstones to build the next era of Flyers hockey around. Sean Couturier signed a huge extension, and he’ll now likely spend a lot of his Flyers future playing alongside a young and exciting winger. If we assume Claude Giroux will play the LW spot for the remainder of his team tenure, then it makes Farabee the heir to the throne.
There may be no prospect as exciting as Joel Farabee when it comes to the Flyers, and to see a 21-year-old not only prove he can hang in the NHL, but become one of the team’s most productive forwards so quickly, it’s not hard to understand why Chuck Fletcher was keen to pencil him to an extension sooner rather than later.
This is one of the best decisions that the Flyers GM could’ve made, giving his team a winger with unlimited potential to build around over the next near-decade, shortly after locking in a Selke-winning Center. The thought process here is evident – build for the long-term.
Photo Credit: Alex McIntyre