The trade that everybody was anticipating has finally happened. More importantly, Jack Eichel will be able to get the artificial disk replacement surgery. Buffalo was not allowing him to get this surgery for whatever reason. Why wouldn’t you let your captain get his neck fixed? Oh because an artificial disk replacement has never been done to an NHL player? The NHL collective bargaining agreement gives Buffalo the final say which is fine, but at the end of the day if your captain says “hey, I need this surgery to fix my neck.” You allow him to get the surgery, its not like Jack is asking for butt check implants. The same owner of the Buffalo Sabres just so happens to be the owner of the Buffalo Bills. So why have the Sabres been a dumpster fire for nearly a decade and the Bills are looking like Super Bowl favorites? I have no answers for you but what I do know is that Jack Eichel is a Vegas Golden Knight.
The trade rumors had been swirling all year and it felt like there were four teams who could potentially land Jack. Between the Kings, Flames, Rangers, and Golden Knights it seemed like Vegas was a stretch but with all the recent injuries GM Kelly McCrimmon went all in on Jack. Sending Alex Tuch, Peyton Krebs, a first round and second round pick for Jack Eichel and a future third round draft pick. No salary is retained by Buffalo so this is a huge move as you would anticipate for the former 2nd overall pick from 2015.
As time continued to move and Jack still remained on the Sabres if a trade hadn’t happened he would have filed for a grievance. Buffalo dodged a bullet because this probably should have happened months ago. Jack felt like a trade was going to happen and luckily it did as he his reunited with the one and only Panda.
Eichel is expected to have the surgery on Friday and recovery is an estimated three months. For a team like Vegas who is dealing with so many injuries you might think this is too long. Guys like Stone and Pacioretty might be back by the end of the month. Vegas has 14 points through 13 games and currently sits outside a wildcard spot. It’s still so early and anything can happen but one thing is certain, Vegas will do anything to win. Jack says he will be back better than ever post surgery. That’s exactly what GM McCrimmon and the Golden Knights expect from Jack because Vegas now believes they can make a run at the cup.