How real have the rumors gotten when it comes to Jack Eichel? Pretty “intense” and though it would serve the Detroit Red Wings to go back to the Western Conference to make it happen according to insider Elliotte Friedman, can we dream for a bit before reality sets in?
So should Yzerman trade the two picks in the first round? We ran a quick poll on Twitter (thanks to the response of Devin L. from The Hockey Writers) and of the 103 votes at the time of this writing, 52% said yes, while 33% turned it down. 9.4% said only to deal the 22nd pick while the remaining 5.7% said to offer the 6th only.
Before diving into the actualities of things, the chance of Eichel landing in Detroit seem thin on the precipice of knowing Buffalo would be seeing him six times per season, if not more should the playoffs become a thing for both organizations. What more motivation does he need to inflict maximum damage on Buffalo?
A few weeks back, we ran another poll that asked about Red Wings fans patience level with the rebuild.
The responses thus far on the Eichel offer is in line. But it stands to reason that the 20.6% wanting to get it moving are in the 52% of fans wanting to deal two picks for him. Eichel would do that and more. He’s an undervalued asset in an organization that is just spinning its wheels when it should be in the playoff conversation every season.
The Realities of Eichel to the Red Wings seem Low
To that 52%, I just don’t see it happening and to be honest, I’m not against dealing one of those picks for him and also a prospect or two (not named Lucas Raymond or Moritz Seider) to get him. Acquiring Eichel would make a strong pivot in this rebuild and suddenly give the Red Wings an awful lot of strength down the middle. It would also ease some burden off Dylan Larkin, who has shouldered a lot as the rebuild has taken shape.
But the big problem here, as reported on by Friedman, is that Buffalo wants him as far away from the Atlantic Division as possible. Which is understandable. Eichel hasn’t minced words about his feelings regarding the Buffalo organization and now it’s a foregone conclusion that his days in a Sabres jersey are numbered.
But to trade him within the division? Good luck.
But could Yzerman work his “jedi mind tricks” again and somehow get Buffalo to relent by trading him to Detroit? It seems Detroit would have to provide more than they’re willing to in order to make it happen–some leverage that Buffalo has in its favor.
Yzerman hasn’t ruled out anything that makes the team better, but he’s also not going to mortgage the momentum that has gradually begun, either. Though if there’s ever anything that says he has an outside shot, it’s this:
If Buffalo values this draft, Yzerman could provide them some draft picks to accommodate that love. Again, it doesn’t seem terribly realistic this would work unless it’s overpaying some to keep him within the division.
I still think Los Angeles comes away him because they’re the most ready to kick things into full gear. If the 65% of respondents in our tiny poll is somewhat proportionate to the Red Wings fan base, people trust Yzerman will get what the organization needs most whether that’s Eichel or two more prospects to add to an already impressive pipeline.
In the meantime, this story is shaping up to have a pretty exciting conclusion.