The fallout between Jack Eichel and the Buffalo Sabres has been one of the most talked-about stories in the NHL over the past few months. The overwhelming feeling is that Eichel needs a fresh start. Now that we are a few weeks into the NHL season, we can start to see who would actually be a good fit for a potential trade with the Sabres depending on their assets and what the team actually needs. One team that seems like a perfect match in that regard is the Boston Bruins. The Sabres have come out and said that they don’t want to trade Eichel within the division, but now that he has threatened to file a possible grievance with the NHL, the Sabres will probably be more willing to listen to Atlantic Division rivals like the Bruins. So what makes Jack Eichel such a good fit for the Bruins?

The Fit

Jack Eichel is a 24-year-old center who has 375 career games in the NHL. In that time, he has recorded 139 goals and 216 assists for a total of 355 points. He was named captain of the Sabres at 20 years old. He has incredible hands and always seems to make the right play. On the Bruins’ side, he is the end-all-be-all fix to the departure of David Krejci. Krejci was a long-time Boston Bruin who left the NHL to return home to the Czech Republic and play hockey in his native country. He always had a second gear come playoff time and was a points machine once the postseason started.

The second line of Jack Eichel, Taylor Hall, and Craig Smith would be one of the best second lines in hockey. Beyond that, the Bruins would have their first-line center of the future already getting reps with the team. Patrice Bergeron, the Bruins captain, and top-line center are currently 36 years old. If they haven’t already, the Bruins need to start looking for his replacement. Jack Eichel is a guy that can extend the Bruins’ Stanley Cup “window” for years.

The Return

The question that you have to ask is what would the Bruins have to give in return for Jack Eichel? The Bruins do have young talent on the team, but their prospect pool is not very deep. So some of the assets would likely have to come from the NHL Bruins roster. A name that sticks out to me is Jake DeBrusk. DeBrusk has had a very up-and-down start to his NHL career. Last year was probably his most disappointing season thus far. In his fourth season, the former 14th overall draft pick played in just 41 games and recorded 14 points. He has a good shot and is a lightning-fast skater on the wing, but has not found his groove in Boston. This year, he is off to a good start, with two goals in four games played.

DeBrusk is a guy who I could see as a centerpiece in a package deal for Eichel. The Bruins package DeBrusk with guys like Charlie Coyle and Jack Studnicka. Studnicka is a 22-year-old who has spent time up and down between the NHL and AHL in the Bruins system. Another name that comes to mind that may surprise some people is Nick Foligno. Foligno joined the Bruins this past summer and I’m not really sure where he fits in on this roster. He’s currently on injured reserve, giving the rest of the team more time to build chemistry without him.

Foligno is slotted as a left-winger and has one point in two games played. However, with just a $3.8 annual cap hit over the next two years, a veteran guy like him is better served as an asset and would likely see a bigger role on the Sabres. The Bruins also have seven draft picks to deal, including a third-rounder they got in return from Calgary for Dan Vladar.

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Buffalo’s Needs

If the Sabres are looking for a blockbuster trade with big names, the Bruins are not a good suitor for them. The Bruins can offer the Sabres a possibility of developing young talent. Guys who have a lot of potential, as well as veterans who can have an immediate impact. The Sabres are off to a very impressive start to the season, currently sitting at 4-1-1. They will fall off a bit in the coming weeks and one elite-level player is not going to save them, just ask Jack Eichel. There is still plenty of time before the trade deadline, but I have a feeling Eichel will have a new home much sooner than that.

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1 Comment

    I get it that Eichel has been hanging out with Bruins players all summer and it would seem to address the Bruins needs with Krejci gone. But what you have to offer the Sabres is garbage.

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