Jack could soon be out of the box in Buffalo.
Semi-retired NHL insider Bob McKenzie returned to the tweet machine on Monday to drop some fairly interesting news: Sabres center Jack Eichel may (or may not) want out of Buffalo, with the Sabres front office answering calls for his services.
Imagine my surprise when I started making calls today and heard Jack Eichel trade rumours, including unverified chatter he may have at some point recently requested a trade out of BUF and that NYR were amongst interested teams. This, of course, required further investigation.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) September 28, 2020
McKenzie reports that Buffalo isn't actively shopping Eichel, but that Eichel is "frustrated" with the lack of team success coming his way.
"I hear that (trade talk) a lot," Eichel's agent Peter Fish said, via McKenzie. "Jack wants to win, he's frustrated (not winning) but, no, he doesn't want out. Jack is preparing to head to Buffalo at some point here and prepare for the season, whenever that may be. That’s all he controls."
McKenzie named the Rangers, who are at the top end of their organizational rebuild and showed flashes of being a competitive hockey team throughout the regular season, as an interested team. They currently hold the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NHL Draft, with wunderkind Alexis Lafreniere likely being selected with that pick.
McKenzie would finish up his tweet frenzy by reinforcing that this is just rumor and conjecture at the moment, but that calls were made, and all parties involved didn't seem eager to move on or forward with a trade.
The messaging out of BUF is Sabres aren’t shopping Eichel, there’s no real desire to trade him, but since Kevyn Adams became new GM several clubs have called about Eichel’s availability. NYR believed to be one of the teams that called. So calls were made; calls were taken.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) September 28, 2020
In a shortened NHL regular season, the 23-year-old netted a career-high 36 goals in 68 games and has been a subject of trade rumors in recent weeks following the Sabres shaking up their front office. New Buffalo GM Kevyn Adams probably won't part with the elite center without a big-time package involving picks, prospects and proven talent.
Eichel's contract, in which he'll earn $10 million per year through 2026, also is a prohibitive factor in trade talks, as well.
Still, the surprising, supposed, legitimate rumor from McKenzie sparked discussion (and heated reaction) on Twitter:
Jack Eichel trade report thread pic.twitter.com/J0n6hfm6m5— Ian McLaren (@iancmclaren) September 28, 2020
Oops!— Ryan Mead (@OhRyanMead) September 28, 2020
Accidently posted this picture of Jack Eichel and David Quinn again, silly me!
Sorry everyone! pic.twitter.com/kgbr7YY9Rf
Buffalo fans: This #Bills team is SO fun! Nothing can ruin our moods. 3-0 baby!!— Bradley Gelber (@BradleyGelber) September 28, 2020
Bob McKenzie: “Imagine my surprise when I started making calls today and heard Jack Eichel trade rumours...” pic.twitter.com/MIHefd0XIP
Be honest, how many times did you click the McKenzie profile to make sure it wasn't a fake once the Eichel tweets started? At last three, right?— Down Goes Brown (@DownGoesBrown) September 28, 2020
Marner for Eichel straight up.— Active Stick (@TheOakLeafs) September 28, 2020
The rest of hockey Twitter after the next 24 hours of Eichel-Rangers theories they’re force fed pic.twitter.com/wWkS71Nb22— Blueshirts Breakaway (@BlueshirtsBreak) September 28, 2020
I fully believe that Jack Eichel has not requested a trade and I’d guess with 99% certainty that he’ll be in Buffalo’s lineup without it ever coming into serious doubt beforehand. But if you think there is literally nothing to the Eichel/NYR link then I have a bridge to sell you.— Adam Herman (@AdamZHerman) September 28, 2020