Report: Jack Eichel could be having surgery soon; Sabres demand still too high

Eichel expected to have neck surgery.

eichel golden knights
Mar 7, 2021; Uniondale, New York, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (9) reacts after a goal by the New York Islanders during the second period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

There may some form of progress in the Jack Eichel situation that could finally end in a trade. TSN’s Shawn Simpson is reporting that Eichel may have surgery “very soon” and his timetable to return would be December.

What is not understood is if the surgery is the team recommended fusion or the artificial disc replacement that Eichel wants.

Jack Eichel may have surgery soon

“I found out – there was a meeting in Buffalo, I might have my days off but I think it was Wednesday the 18th,” Elliotte Friedman reported on his most recent podcast. “The League was there, the Player’s Association, Eichel, and the Sabres. I’m not sure if the doctors were there in person or via Zoom, and everyone put their cards on the table. There was no resolution”

After that meeting, Eichel switched agents and hired Pat Brisson to get this moving in the right direction. That now appears to be happening.

So what surgery is Eichel having? A fusion’s recovery time is no less than 12 weeks. Meanwhile, the disc replacement is a window of 8-10 weeks. Based on Simpson’s December return, it sounds like it may be the fusion option, but it’s NOT confirmed.

One other thing that is not clear from Simpson’s report is what does “very soon” mean? Is the surgery scheduled for next week or next month? It remains unknown.

Sabres demands remains high!

eichel rumors
Jan 18, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Carter Hart (79) makes a save as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (9) jumps out of the way during the first period at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Also in Simpson’s report is that the Sabres are still asking for somewhere between 4-6 pieces. They continue to demand mostly futures, including any interested team’s top two prospects which no one has remotely been willing to do.

The move to Brisson may not lower the trade demands, but successful surgery and a return to play could get the Sabres something close to it.

Speaking with a former team executive, they agreed that the agent switch was the move Eichel needed to make. The exec called Brisson a “true professional” and just exactly what this situation needs.

With this news coming to light, it is starting to at least look like a resolution is truly in the works. FINALLY!