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Canes GM compares Justin Faulk to Orr, Potvin, and Housley

Aug 12, 2012, 4:49 PM EDT

Justin Faulk AP

Justin Faulk made a big impression on the Carolina Hurricanes last year. In his first season out of Minnesota-Duluth the 19 year-old played big minutes and killed it on the power play. The impression he made on his GM Jim Rutherford, however, was even bigger.

Mike Morreale of heard from the Canes executive and finds out he believes Faulk will end up in some very elite company.

“We’ve had defensemen come into the League like [Bobby] Orr, [Denis] Potvin and [Phil] Housley, who were great offensive players, but I’ve never seen a player play so well defensively and offensively at his age,” Rutherford said. “I can’t describe it well enough to tell [fans] what they’re in store for having this great young player.”

Uh, hey Justin… No pressure there, guy. For the record that’s two Hall Of Famers and a guy who will probably end up there eventually that he’s comparing Faulk to.

The truth on Faulk is that he’s a good player already and a guy who helps the Hurricanes’ sketchy blue line corps have one guy they can count on. That said, putting him in the same company as Orr and Potvin… Maybe Rutherford is a bit too jacked up about the upcoming season.

  1. lonespeed - Aug 12, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    He’s good enough to live up to those expectations…

    No one yet knows because he plays in Raleigh.

  2. aesophy - Aug 12, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    Justin Faulk is great, don’t get me wrong, he has tremendous potential to be a future all-star.. But any comparisons to Orr should be dismissed as pure, unadulterated hype. Comparisons to Housley might not be too far off in the future, however…

  3. 19inarow - Aug 12, 2012 at 6:37 PM

    In 1979, Potvin took over the captaincy when the Islanders had already become a team who didn’t seem like they could win it all (a la Washington). He went on to lead his team to 4 straight Stanley Cups, 19 playoff consecutive playoff series victories, in 5 years and over the course of 499 games. He played a very physical game, whatever it took to win. Think: Phaneuf who could rack up 80-100 pts while being a tremendous leader of men. That makes those #s all the more impressive, especially when you consider he retired as the scoring leading among defenseman. Oh and he was spectacular, defensively. He was everything a hockey player is meant to be. I hope Justin knows what he’s up against, because obviously his GM doesn’t.

  4. nordak20 - Aug 12, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    I wouldn’t say the kid racked up big numbers offensively last year. Albeit had had a good rookie campaign, but 8-14-22 and a minus 16 doesn’t really strike me as extraordinary, even for rookie standards.

  5. nothanksimdriving123 - Aug 12, 2012 at 7:04 PM

    Orr? Seriously? In his rookie year, Bobby played 5 fewer games than Faulk but outscored him 41-22 while making the NHL 2nd All-Star Team. Let me know if this kid wins the NHL scoring crown and his 3rd Norris Trophy in his 4th season and we can talk about him and Orr.

  6. theawesomersfranchise - Aug 12, 2012 at 7:11 PM

  7. noahbhs11 - Aug 12, 2012 at 9:57 PM

    @nothanks I don’t think they should compare him to Orr either but 40 years ago when Orr played it was a LOT easier to score back then…

  8. withseidelinn - Aug 13, 2012 at 8:56 AM

    This is the kind of crap that ruins kid’s potential. Don’t overhype a guy that hasn’t even played a full year in the NHL by saying he will be as good as someone like Bobby Orr. The chances of there ever being a defenseman who can put up Orr-like numbers is extremely slim. This kid can play, that’s for sure and any team would want him, but just let him play his game and don’t flood his head with these crazy predictions before he has accomplished anything significant.

    • hockeydon10 - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:46 AM

      On one hand you’re correct about placing those type of expectation on a kid.

      On the other hand, Rutherford has to hype up his team. It’s not like he can go out there and say, “This kid has the awesome potential to be the next Lilja!”

      I think he should have toned it down slightly, but not very much.

  9. theboysofdallas - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:19 AM

    This is no Orr or Potvin

  10. theboysofdallas - Aug 13, 2012 at 9:20 AM

    I meant this kid is no Orr or Potvin

  11. phil5111 - Aug 13, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    This is completely unfair to this kid. Phil Housley, ok. But Orr – think the best defenseman of all time, PERIOD. He did everything; score, pass, hit, fight. He was on a different planet and redefined the game.

    With Denis Potvin, think Scott Stevens and Paul Coffey, and the captain of the team. He wasn’t quite as nasty as Stevens but was as good defensively, and lead at least as well. He didn’t skate like Coffey but he did score like him and he stuck up for his teammates too.

    I am sure this kid will be a good maybe great defenseman, but really, keep these comparisons out of here.

  12. dan46778 - Aug 13, 2012 at 5:54 PM

    Has this kid change how d men play the game??? No I do not think so… Orr did!!!!

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