Irresponsible Rumormongering

Friedman: Rangers still the front runners for Jack Eichel

Per Elliotte Friedman’s 31 Thoughts, the Rangers are still the front runners for Jack Eichel. It seems that this is going the Rick Nash route, where he was always going to be a Ranger, it was just a matter of when.

There are rumors that the Rangers made a legitimate offer for Eichel last offseason, and this from Friedman just compounds it more. Per Friedman, the deal breaker was the #1 overall pick, which obviously isn’t in play this year barring another miracle. Plus add on that The Athletic also has the Rangers pegged as the front runner, and you have yourself deep, thick smoke.

Naturally, this will all depend on cost. If the cost is one of the “core four” prospects (Lafreniere, Kakko, Fox, Shesterkin), then I think it’s a no from the Rangers. Miller may be on that list as well. We all think it will be a king’s ransom. So it’s going to be funny when it costs the Rangers Howden, Reunanen, Strome, Pajuniemi and 2 1sts.

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  • If his neck is as bad as they say: Howden, Reunanen, Pajuniemi and a 1st would be too much.

    Strome straight up is too much.

    If it’s disc replacement or fusion, I’m running like hell away from him.

    • Who is “they”? As far as I know we haven’t actually heard anything about the severity, aside from whatever implications we can draw from it needing surgery (according to Eichel) as opposed to “lots” of rest (according to the Sabres). In that case “Howden, Reunanen, Pajuniemi and a 1st” is fine, none of those players are going to play a part in the future … and we can afford to lose the first given all the draft choices we’ve made over the course of the last 3-4 years. Hell, if they want the equivalent of 4 1st rounders, sub Hajek and ADA in the deal for Reunanen and Pajuniemi. lol

      Problem is though, none of this would be a wise trade from a cap perspective.

      Of course I’m sure any team interested is going to get all the medical files on the matter, and probably have their own doctors look him over — and that will affect the price to be paid.

      Subject to the doctor reports, we can live with moving someone like Jones, maybe Miller or Lundkvist as the primary asset in a trade … but Lafreniere, Kakko, Fox, Shesterkin & Kravtsov are non-starters for me given just the whiff of him being damaged goods.

      • That as far as you know, but Friedman had it all laid out in 31 thoughts. They’ve had this for a few years in the lumbar region, but any time you’re working around the neck it ain’t easy because of the real estate surrounding it.

        • Isn’t that what I said? I said it for a reason … and I added subject to the doctors’ report. Regardless this is why I limited what should go back to the Sabres, they were in a better position before the injury sidelined him and now should have to settle for less — their own fault for being chicken shites.

          • That’s not what you wrote at all, and if that’s what you meant, write it: I’m not a mind reader.

          • He included Doctors’ reports as well? Rumors of the severity of the issue are so vague as to not be particularly useful. Again, what we KNOW is that it requires surgery — the prognosis is up in the air. He’s played with these “issues” for a while now, didn’t seem to affect his play all that much to the point of people noticing it was a big issue. Details are lacking.

            Don’t be so confrontational all the time. I asked who is they and you had to be snarky with the “as far as you know” — WHICH IS WHAT I SAID … and which is what I said I said. Man, life is too short for this type of shite all the time on this blog.

          • No, we don’t even know that it requires surgery. We just know that Eichel would rather go that route.

            If you think I’m confrontational, you should work on clarity.

          • I’ve had clients that have had cervical disc fusions. First of all, doctors prefer not to do a fusion on a young person. That is because they are notorious for needing further surgery after a number of years. Eichel is only 24. Secondly, if it is a fusion, or a mechanical disc replacement, they are subject to being damaged when subjected to forces like in automobile collisions. Being hit by a 200 pound hockey player on skates is probably akin to such a trauma.

            If the Sabers are saying that he just needs lots of rest then that is nonsensical. Disc herniations do not heal no matter how much rest one might get. They can become asymptomatic–for a while. But they can return to being symptomatic. For his sake, of course, I hope for the best.

            I find the disc herniation worrisome. I wasn’t a fan of trading assets and then paying him 10 million before the injury. I am even less favorable toward it now.

        • dude here, Miller is awful, he made the team out of camp, played solid alongside Trouba, decent, not great but has been exploited for the soft, slow-witted liability that he often is.

          • Miller is extremely soft player for someone his size. He is nothing to write home about. Definitely expendable. The few times I watched Zac Jones play he seems way to undersized for an NHL defenseman. Got pushed around by a Philly Forward going into the corners like he was a flea.

    • Just had mine fused and a disk replacement under it. 2 weeks was back in gym. 6 weeks out now and I’m doing great

      • Glad to hear thats worked out for you, that’s a very tough injury to deal with! But I have 2 questions for you:

        How many faceoffs do you expect to take over the next 82 games? Or bodychecks from 200-lb plus people traveling 20 mph on skates?

          • You sound like a total moron, thanks for existing. Not enough of them around.

        • Agree. One big hit and Eichel is out on LTIR for months. Yeah… let’s play him against Wilson, Kassian, Maroon, Komarov type players.
          I have a disc hernia and it is fckin endless story.

  • Doesn’t solve their issues, and it will set the rebuild/contender movement backwards in cap hit and pieces needed to land Eichel. Eichel is not a superstar…and he has a bunch of injury issues, one of them involving his neck vertebra.
    It’s a hard pass. Avoid Eichel.

      • Well superstar generally means one of those generational talent guys like Crosby, McKinnon, Malkin (in his prime), Ovi, Mathews, Patrick Kane, Draisaitl & McDavid. I don’t think Eichel is in that tier.

        I don’t think he’s even in the next tier of stars which would include Schiefle, Marner, Aho, Marchand, Pasta, & Mark Stone and Zibanejad.

        • No, a generational player is a superstar, but not every superstar is generational. A subset of a subset of a subset of a subset of a set(that set being a NHL player.)

          Top 3 at your position is a superstar.

          Generational makes a superstar look like a jobber.

          McDavid is generational.

          Eichel is fringe superstar.

        • let’s just dispense with the notion that Zibanejad is on the same tier as Marner or Mark Stone.

          • I can see your point. You can also make an argument Marner and Stone belong in the first group of superstars. Zib, when he’s going good, is right up there. All he needs is a good playoff run or come up big in some important games. This year he didn’t, but this was a bizarre season.
            The other way to look at superstar and star players is would you, as a fan, pay to go see him play. I think Zibanejad puts fans in the seats.

          • agreed, Marner and Stone are top tier forwards, for certain.

            me personally, i’m not a fan of Mika but there’s no doubting his popularity among fans.

        • No, I forgot Panarin, and I’m sure some other star players in both groups. I think Panarin should be in the first group. He IS a superstar player.

  • I’m sure before the Rangers would even consider it..they will know more about Eichel’s health than the man itself. Its been over a year, and these rumors just won’t go away….

      • Shouldn’t this all be dependent on the PRICE to be paid and what the Doctors’ suggest? I mean the guy was a PPG player without much of a supporting cast. He’s not generational, but he’s been damn good.

        • First things first, this is a hypothetical that stands little chance of realization. Jack Eichel is a known commodity, Kakko isn’t … yet. I would suspect they wouldn’t make this trade in a million years.

          I think the fact that both are #2’s shouldn’t influence the decision in the least. I would be more apt to trade a defenseman for him, we should deal from strength … and I think any deal for Eichel means making a decision re: our Centers moving forward (Mika or Strome). I’m leaving Chytil out of the equation because he’s cost controlled and because despite his flaws, I think there’s a lot more to get out of him — he’s been saddled with 2 kids on the wing and virtually no quality PP time.

          Again though, this is all subject to the doctors … I would at least give the matter some thought before rejecting it out of hand (if he’s truly going to be healthy moving forward). I’m still more apt to look at a young prospect Center out there, that’s just my way … but I want to be openminded about it. I suspect someone would outbid me in the end because I feel no desperation, I can be patient even if some aren’t.

          • Tanto, take a look at Eichel’s contract—he’s got a no-move clause for the last 4 years of it. He could play great next year, and then get badly hurt the next and leave the Rangers holding the bag. This is the big fear for me with Eichel.

            Herniated disks are chronic injuries, and surgery doesn’t necessarily fix a guy who’s then gonna get hit in the shoulder and neck area by large men on skates for a living. That’s what scares me off about Eichel. He’s been a good player in the league for sure—a top 10 center in ‘18-‘19 and ‘19-20–but he could end up quickly as immovable damaged goods for the team that picks him up.

  • Why is it fans want to give up 3rd and 4th line players to get a super star from a team, but want a kings ransom if they are the ones selling the player. A herniated disc these days is not a major injury anymore with today’s technology. If you were trading him what would you want in return? Stop with the homer vision disease and look at it as if you were trading him and then you can propose a trade.

    • To say any spinal surgery is NBD because “technology” has no idea what they’re talking about, FULL STOP.

    • Neck injuries are a gift that keep on giving — and what they give isn’t what you want. You can’t just dismiss it out of hand so easily.

    • Disc herniations are very big deals Johnny. From experience with clients who have suffered from them I have to disagree. The only technological advance are mechanical disc replacements. Those require surgery and rehab afterward. They also don’t like to do such surgeries on people as young as Jack Eichel.

  • So here’s my fantasy — Drury was the one who opposed the earlier package for Eichel (in a collegial way) as too much and that won him points with Dolan.

    I know, a fantasy,

  • Lol at including Howden who wants him? And besides for the two #1 picks it’s not enough hate to say it but you likely see Buch go in a trade for Eichel. Not real sure what Buffalo needs a year of astrometric for?

    • Trading a healthy, offensively productive team player, that does not give the organization that pays him trouble, and who has proved he will not backdown from opponents aggression, for a possible problem named Eichel, does not make sense to me.

  • How bad are his injuries? I think they need to have him do the surgery and play several months before any team is dumb enough to trade for him.

  • The Eichel question reminds me a bit of my Carmelo Anthony concerns back in the day — trade a lot, pay a lot, team was better before the trade.

    • But Eichel is a more valuable hockey player than you are. Anthony was not a more valuable basketball player than you, cap considerations aside. The coach would be smart enough to leave you or I on the bench.

  • Hard Pass.

    After yesterdays press conference with Eichel…There are multiple red flags. Neck issue being the biggest, but that whole conference was a bad reflection. I get the Sabres organization is screwed up, but that was undisciplined. And one thing this team needs is to be a lot more disciplined.

    He’s not what this team needs. His cap hit is too much.

    Turning over the 4th line would solve a lot more problems than bringing in Eichel. Big mistake if they do this.

      • Dude is a gym rat and if your best player is your hardest worker, you get a letter on them quick. Maybe not the C, but a letter nonetheless.

  • I’m not sure the Rangers would give up that much talent. It’s also a huge cap hit plus Mika and you need to sign Fox et al long term. I give it less than 50% plus a neck injury for Eichel, might not be insurable at $10m /ps.

  • IMO, Eichel is too high a risk for the $$$ needed to keep him and the cost of losing some valuable key players. The Rangers problem is not scoring, its physicality. Solve that issue and all will be fine.

  • Buch, Lundkvist, 1st rounder for Eichel. (Buffalo laughs but don’t rain on my fantasy parade here). Trade Strome for whatever you can get. Buy out TDA. Re sign Mika for 6 years @ 8 million. The math works.

    Fight me.

  • Go for Barkov or Tkachuck. Leave it to the rangers to sell the farm (literally) for damaged goods.

        • Lighten up!!! I asked you where you heard that Barkov and Tkachuck were available, and you answer me with some comment about “affording Eichel”—something that had nothing to do with what I was asking you.You didn’t give me any specifics,or back it up, so I figured you were just naming people you would like; with no idea if they were in play. In other words a useless, throwaway comment based on nothing.
          If that’s how you answer a real question, then don’t be so surprised if your answer is dismissed as easily as it was.
          Sorry if my response was too much for your sensitive soul. It was intended to offend you.

          • The last line should read..”wasn’t intended to offend you.” Just a typo…don’t get all bent out of shape.(;

          • Then that’s all you had to say…not give some unrelated “Eichel availability “ answer.There have been rumors all over the place about which direction they might go…thus, my interest in where you were getting your info . An honest question, nothing more

          • Whatever…one question though..are you familiar with the phrase “Grow a pair!!?” Just asking.

    • Tkachuk is a winger, we don’t need wingers and it doesn’t solve the problem up the middle.

      Barkov will make the Panthers pay … they are now a good team with a good coach in a sunny market with low taxes, kind of like TB — elephant in the room, Bobrovsky and his cap hit.

      • As I’ve written before, the no state tax in FLA is overblown if the Rangers use signing bonuses instead of paragraph 1 salary and the player has a FL off season domicile.

  • Do teams get to give a player a medical examination by their doctors before making a final decision on a trade?

    • Player would have to sign off on medical records being released to 3rd party under HIPAA, but only Wetbrain Dolan would buy a pig in a poke sight unseen.

      • Thanks Reen. You have to have faith in exterior doctors then. I’d pass on him anyway, far too expensive. What about Ryan Johansson – big guy down the middle, skilled 28 years old. What would be cost as the 2/3 centre.

        • Contract for output sucks, would probably actually produce at par on the Rangers.

          The risk would be that his contract is unloadable if he doesn’t work out and the team has to stop buying out contracts at this point v

  • Hard pass here too. Price to acquire is way high plus injury and $10 mln per is tough to fit in. Even if they were able to acquire him on the cheap it’s the salary that makes it hard to fit in unless Buffalo either eats some salary or Rangers trade long term salary back. All Ranger vets with long term salary have NTC/NMC or will be UFA’ s soon.

    • They can work their way through the salary, but either Mika or Strome has to go the other way — or somewhere else.

  • Sigh, I just don’t see the obsession, with what the Rangers have.

    Chytil will be a legit 2C, the Rangers just have to give him a real chance to prove it.

    • I know I know … but Eichel is shiny (tarnished some by the injury and perhaps a “me” attitude). Beware, shiny objects in the mirror appear better than they really are.

      • Honestly, what it would take to get him and then pay him, would tear the team apart.

        No thanks.

    • Sorry pal . He to disagree with you here. Chytil is not a 2C nor will he ever be in my view. He has limited hockey sense and in 3 years has shown limited growth. His best position is wing and even there he is at best a 3LW or RW. I would move him in the off season while he still has decent trade value.

      • Hey bro.

        Chytil doesn’t get the minutes. Neither did Buch and then when Buch did get the minutes, look what happened.

        Not to mention that Chytil has never had the same linemates for any length of time.

        • He has had enough time to show something that would warrant an increase in ice time. He unfortunately hasn’t delivered. Unfortunately he hasn’t delivered. You know how much I liked him as a prospect when I used to post over at the other BSB. But after 3 years, it’s just not there as a center. Shame too because he has such natural talent. Just doesn’t have the hockey sense.

          • Bro, his pts per 60 are excellent. Not good, but excellent.

            But why let facts get in the way of a good disagreement. 🙂

        • Buchnevich didn’t get the minutes because he physically wasn’t ready.

          Chytil is starting to hit that point. Last half of the season he was generating shots, but was snakebit. He might need a skills coach to work on his shot, but he’ll come around next season.

          • Exactly. Chytil with Panarin and Kakko would be a great line.

            Drop Strome to 3C with Kreider and Krav on his line and then you have 3 excellent lines.

    • “Chytil will be a legit 2C, the Rangers just have to give him a real chance to prove it.”

      Not even in 3-4 years my dude. He has to many holes in his game to be consider as a elite 3c. He would do this club justice by being a trade chip. It also doesn’t help that Panarin seems to not want to play with him lol. Laffy will never have to play him again… It’s best if the team’s top winger and lottery pick aren’t ever a line with him imo.

  • It’s not what the fans want or what Drury wants for that matter. It’s all about what Dolan wants. And signs point to him wanting Eichel.

  • This is a big hard fat NO!

    If anyone hasn’t watched the Eichel interview. Please go watch it. He is completely high on Perks. And for a absolutely good reason. We need to run from this trade.

    I am not saying he shouldn’t be. But boy as a ex drug addict this kid is going to need a lot of help. He is showing every tell there is on perks in that interview. I really feel for him. It is a long road he is going down. And I hope there are people that care for him.

    Seeing that interview cemented my view point on him. No offense but he wasn’t that good to begin with and that person I saw in the interview is not the kid from the draft. That kid is completely gone and all that is left is a shell of a human being.

    RUN from him.

    I hope the Sabres are helping him but I know the only one who can save him is him.

    Good luck Eichel I honestly wish for you a better path. But I want no part of the drama that will unfold with you on the Rangers.

    • Herniated disks in your neck are very painful. Exactly the type of injury that opiates help with. If he looked stoned it was for a medical reason.

    • There is nothing more irresponsible and really slanderous, than labeling somebody a drug addict by watching the way he acts on a TV screen.
      Save us all from ex drug addicts, or for that matter, anyone who has fallen on hard times and recovered, only to offer their expert opinions on somebody else’s problems; without having a lick of information, other than their own experiences to go by!
      What I saw in that interview was a guy who sees his youth and career slipping away. A guy who realizes that Buffalo is a shit-show and isn’t getting better anytime soon.
      Its possible that they will have at least 5 or 6 new bodies on that roster next year..and what does he do…say welcome aboard, lets try not to lose all 82 games?
      Whether the Rangers are interested remains to be seen. The health issue should be the main concern followed by the cost in players and picks.
      Not some slanderous innuendos and outright reckless speculation, from somebody who has NO first hand knowledge other than their own personal failures to compare to!
      You should be ashamed and embarrassed!

      • I’ve seen people go from 5 to 30 on Percocet dosage to heroin and it ain’t pretty.

        In the best of circumstances it’s tricky to monitor and Buffalo hasn’t shown competency in anything the last 5 years.

        • Good for you….And what does that have to do with ANYTHING!!! Like the other moron, you’re already assuming the guy is on drugs…based on nothing…other than the fact that you don’t want the Rangers to trade for him? Really????? The guy posted a slanderous piece, based solely on his observation from afar on a TV screen…because hes supposedly a former drug addict who can spot the signs?
          Total self serving nonsense by someone who needs to feel important. The post should be taken down.

  • Injuries aside (he will be fine if he got proper treatment BUF isn’t going to give him) I would trade either buch/strome, realistically add in lindqvist and a 1st is the most I would do, we need a 2nd C and imagine the points he would put up w pan or even kratsov, he was a PPG in buf that is telling u something lol

  • I too have soured on Eichel and now believe that the “juice is not worth the squeeze “ to borrow a line from a movie.

    I would much rather go after Goodrow, Coleman, Oleksiak and either Reihhart or Monohan.

  • I know that eichel is an elite talent. But do we need jack? I’m not a fan of getting rid of Mika. The guy is legit. And we tend to favor players from other teams as if the grass is greener. Wouldnt the point be to add someone to the top 6 to play among Mika? If that’s the case then wouldn’t a center who plays a different style benefit us more?

    I’m guessing Barkov is in the rumor mill because of price? I’d much rather Barkov. He plays a different style, is better at faceoffs than eichel and it really wouldn’t hurt our hearts to have both he and Mika locked up long-ish term. Neither will be Brad Richards. With Eichel and Mika you’re basically hoping they outperform each other with the same style. I mean I’m knitpicking on elite centers here. But with eichel injury concern and style of play wouldnt someone like Barkov be more a fit?

    But if not Barkov then can’t we follow suit and go down the line of centers who could be available that play that “different style”? We can’t keep every prospect. That’s a given. And we can’t keep “building”. It’s better to consolidate and jump on someone who may be available, even if they really aren’t. Like you won’t trade me your first line center- but what if I offered you a ridiculous price for him? If you’re Vancouver would horvat be available if I offered you players in Petersens timeline?

    I don’t know if Monaghan is an upgrade over strome but would they be willing to move him in Calgary? What about Elias lindholm?

    I think Malkin is too far past his prime but as a 2C with both Mika panarin and the new wingers could his big body and style help us out more than eichel?

    Or maybe the answer is to sign a danault or someone defensive and gritty and use chytil as the 2C?

    There’s a lot of options. I just don’t know if eichel is the guy. But if they do end up getting him I hope we don’t give too much. And I hope he is as advertised for us. Playoffs are a different beast.

  • Did someone say trade Lundqvist in a package for Eichel? He’s going to be a major part of the defence for years to come.

  • Zibanejad should be our top center.

    Strome should be moved.

    There is a decent 2nd line center that can be had not too expensive who has size, plays physical, wins faceoffs and produces offensively and his name is JT Miller

  • An Eichel acquisition goes against all the tea leaves. It’s very clear that Dolan (and likely Sather) want this team to go in a different direction than they have the past few years, meaning they do not want to hang their hat solely on finesse skill players, they want more physicality. I’m not talking about enforcers, per se, but players who can dump and chase, play the boards, crash the net, and win puck battles. Power forwards. Grinders. The opposite of Eichel.

    He’s a wonderful player, but what he adds to the team is more of the same. Scoring and playmaking are not what ails the Rangers. They were among the league’s best in scoring. They need some systems improvement, and they need a few guys who can not only wear down opposing defense but help to withstand more physical teams who take away our time and space, and thus neutralize the Rangers’ playmaking superiority. Again, Eichel doesn’t help in this regard at all.

    Factor in the cost and injury concerns, and this doesn’t sound like an acquisition Dolan is gunning for. This sounds like someone JG might have wanted, and likely that’s where all the rumors came from, but I’m very skeptical this current FO is going to aggressively pursue a deal here.

    As for Chytil, I’m not too high on the guy’s overall game, to be honest, and I wouldn’t be too sad to see him go in the right deal. However, I’m certainly willing to see what he can do over the next year or two with more ice time. Among players with at least 200 minutes played, he had one of the best G/60 rates in the league. It’s worth keeping an eye on.

    If he can round out his overall game, improve on faceoffs, and use his body a bit more, I could be very happy with Zib/Chytil/Strome down the middle.

  • I am not happy that Lafreniere and Miller did not go to the World Hockey Championship, they need as much playing and experience at this stage

  • If you look at what Zibanejad has done compared to Eichel I’ll take Zibanejad at a lower cost. There are other centers out there that will cost less in a trade and less against the cap. Secondly, we do not know how bad Eichel’s neck hurts Robles is. A bad disc issue and ice hockey is not a good combination. Last but not least get a physical bug defenseman and a couple forwards that can play tough for the fourth line.

  • Just how good was Eichel before his injury? I think +/- paints a good picture over a long period – so I looked at five years 2016-2021, tossing out Eichel’s rookie campaign. Buffalo was outscored by 245 goals. At even strength, they were outscored by 28 when Eichel was on the ice.

    He did not play every game, so let’s knock the 245 down to 200, which means about 170 when he was not playing. He played about 1/3 of the ES time, so figure he should have been -85. This suggests he was worth close to 60 goals over a five year period, 11-12 goals a year.

    That’s quite substantial, say the difference between .006 and .007 in a goalie’s save percentage – but it’s far from generational. healthy, he might be worth $10M.

  • I hope there is a plan B if they can’t get Eichel!
    NY always gets screwed the minute another team offers a name player even though our package is better !

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