NHL Rumor Mill – August 24, 2021
THE ATHLETIC: In his latest mailbag segment, John Vogl was asked if the Buffalo Sabres would set a more realistic asking price to move Jack Eichel. He said there doesn’t appear to have been many negotiations during this saga. The Sabres have set their price but no one has met it over the past four months.
Despite Kevyn Adams claiming otherwise, Vogl believes the Sabres general manager knows he can’t bring Eichel back. With no other clubs willing to meet his asking price, Adams could be forced to lower it a little.
Vogl believes it will be harder for Adams to trade Eichel having failed to do so before the 2021 NHL Draft and the start of the free-agent market on July 28. “Teams that had assets and cap space don’t have them anymore,” he said.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I wouldn’t be surprised if the Sabres attempt to move Eichel before the start of training camp next month. The problem, of course, remains the ongoing impasse between the young center and Sabres doctors over which surgical procedure he should undergo for the herniated disc in his neck. He wants disc replacement surgery while the team doctors prefer a fusion procedure.
The longer Eichel goes without treatment the more playing time he’ll miss in the upcoming season. The few teams believed to still have an interest in him (Anaheim Ducks? New York Rangers? Vegas Golden Knights? Columbus Blue Jackets?) could be reluctant to pursue a trade if he’s not ready to play.
That could change if Adams lowers his asking price. It’s rumored he seeks four assets comparable to four first-round picks. If he maintains that price I doubt Eichel will be going anywhere this season.
THE SCORE: cites The Athletic’s Michael Russo yesterday tweeting it doesn’t appear a new contract is imminent between the Minnesota Wild and Kirill Kaprizov. However, there’s been increased discussions between the two sides. He also indicated KHL club CSKA Moscow has publicly stated Kaprizov won’t be playing for them this season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: So much for that one-year, eight-figure deal Kaprizov’s camp was reportedly trying to use as leverage in their talks with the Wild.