Jack Eichel Returning to Buffalo Soon
The Buffalo Sabres are on pace to miss the playoffs for the 11th straight year. They're 19 points back of the Boston Bruins, who hold down the final Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference.
The past 11 years have been extremely tough for hockey fans in Buffalo. Not only has the team missed the postseason since the 2011-2012 season, the team has finished dead last multiple times, signed countless free agents who have not panned out, and is now undergoing another complete rebuild.
They have been more entertaining to watch this season, that's for certain. Jeff Skinner is thriving under head coach Don Granato, scoring 20 goals and leading the team in points (34).
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Tage Thompson has enjoyed a breakout season, scoring 15 goals and 33 points in just 43 games, and defenseman Rasmus Dahlin is third on the team in points (30).
Newly acquired forward, Alex Tuch, has been playing tremendous since coming back from his upper-body injury. Tuch has 6 goals and 17 points in 15 games. He was traded to Buffalo in the Jack Eichel deal, when the Sabres former captain was shipped to the Vegas Golden Knights in November. The trade also brought back forward prospect, Peyton Krebs to the Sabres.
Eichel finally got his preferred neck surgery after the trade (artificial disc replacement), and while he has not played in an NHL game in a calendar year, that will change as of tomorrow.
According to Vegas general manager Kelly McCrimmon, Eichel will make his Golden Knights debut on Wednesday night, against the Colorado Avalanche.
Eichel has been skating with his Vegas teammates in recent days and weeks.
This does impact Buffalo. The Vegas Golden Knights visit the KeyBank Center on Thursday, March 10th, which means that Eichel will make his return to Buffalo and play in front of fans here with another team's sweater.
The relationship between Eichel and the Sabres eroded rapidly, to the point Eichel made public comments about his frustration at locker clean out in 2021.
We shall see what kind of response Eichel gets from the fans in Buffalo that night. The attendance has been putrid, but I'm quite sure fans will try and find a way into the building for Eichel's return...