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Sabres Report Cards: Jack Eichel

May 9th, 2017 at 12:25 PM
Aggregated By Sports Media 101

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The season is over, and we’re going to rate every player who played more than 20 games this season on their performance the same way we were all graded back in the day – on a report card scale of A to F. We’re taking a look at everyone from Bailey to Rodrigues in our 2016-17 Buffalo Sabres Report Cards.

Age: 20

Contract: Cap hit of $925,000, under contract through 2017-18 season.

Introduction: Jack Eichel was drafted #2 overall two years ago with the anticipation that he would become the centerpiece of a Sabres rebuild that would quickly progress from bottom-dweller to playoff contender.

Much like the team’s current rebuild, Eichel’s sophomore season shows significant improvement in many areas, but also a few glaring weaknesses. He led the team in points, was second in shots, and finished 11th in the NHL in points per game at .93 points per game. Let’s dig a little deeper to find out just how good Eichel’s second season was.

Key Stat: As we first learned back in March, Eichel is one of the best transition forwards in the NHL. No forward carries the puck out of their own zone or into the opponent’s zone more than Eichel. On a team that was sorely lacking in players with the ability to either exit the defensive zone or enter the offensive zone with any kind of consistency (we’re looking at you, every defenseman) Jack was the one player you could always count on to do both.

Thumbs Up: As stated earlier, Eichel’s .93 points per game was a fantastic number considering he missed a third of the season with a high ankle sprain, an injury that lingers even after a player is approved to return to the ice. He helped pile up those points by leading the team with …

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Tags: April 10, 2017, Buffalo Sabres, Evander Kane, Jack Eichel, Report: Eichel won’t sign extension if Bylsma is still coach (Updated), Sam Reinhart, Vote Now

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