Jack Eichel showed promise, but didn’t set the world on fire in the comeback season

Welcome back to the Vegas Season Hockey Now in our review series where we look at every player in the Vegas Golden Knights and the 2021-22 season from Michael Amadeo to Zach Whitecloud.

You can catch up on the series here: Michael Amadeo, Riley Smith, Jonas Rundberg, Keegan Colsar, Robin Lehner, Alex Petrangelo, Nolan Patrick, Shea Theodore, Jake Lischen, Mark Stone, Max Paciorte, Laurent Prosuite, Mathias Janmark, and William. Transporter.

The player of the day was initially assumed to be Evgeny Dadonov. But on Thursday, he was traded to Montreal Canadiens for Shea Weber’s remaining contract. So we turn to Jack Eichel.

Jack Eichel

statistics: 34 GP 14-11-25 points
a necklace: 4 years left at $10 million (NMC)
Missed games: 48 *
condition: injured (finger)
VHN degree: B-

general ideas

Jack Eichel’s 2021-22 season feels like a bigger epic than The Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter. A year ago he was in a state of uncertainty with the Buffalo Sabers organization about the treatment of his injury and the future with the organization.

He is now the highest-paid player on the Stanley Cup-designed Vegas Golden Knights. However, last season, the team failed to make the playoffs, which meant that Eshel’s streak continued not to play a playoff.

The Golden Knights now have an elite core with Eichel, Mark Stone, Shea Theodore, Alex Pietrangelo and Jonathan Marchessault. But the team had few opportunities to bond together, especially since Eshel’s arrival.

Injuries have restricted three of Eichel, Stone and Pacioretty’s top Golden Knight players to playing less than 40 games. Next season will give us a much better look at what the Golden Knights can do as a whole unit, and Eichel is probably the biggest part of that.

Highlights

In his limited appearance, Eshel managed to score nearly 15 goals and 11 assists for 25 points. It was advertised for its speed and disk-handling capabilities. One thing that surprisingly impressed me was his ability to play physically, especially after neck surgery. Eshel wasn’t afraid to throw a body, block a shot, or make a hit in order to play.

Even in a limited season, Eichel had a few highlights. Let’s review some of the highlights.

Of course, Eichel was acquired on November 4 in a massive deal with Alex Tuch and Peyton Krebs going to the Buffalo Sabers. Tuch scored 38 points in 50 games with the Cypress and Crips 22 in 57. Now that the lottery draft is over, we know that Saif won’t arrive either. 16 comprehensive selection.

In mid-November, Eichel was welcomed to Las Vegas in style, and then finally had an artificial disc replacement. Eichel’s first game was on February 16 in a loss to the Colorado Avalanche. He scored his first goal with VGK against the San Jose Sharks in his third game with the team.

Two games later at the T-Mobile Arena, fans got a look at what Eichel could do with his speed as he scored his first home goal for the Golden Knights against the Boston Bruins.

But without a doubt, Eshel’s biggest goal of the year came against the Ottawa Senators when he described the game as batting style.

Another notable thing to mention regarding Eichel is his return to KeyBank Center and Buffalo, New York in March. The Golden Knights appropriately lost the match as Tuch and Krebs scored and Eichel received a mixed reception on his return. Eshel cast some shadow over the Cypress fan base after the match.

What’s Next

Eichel is currently recovering from a broken finger he sustained after blocking a shot against Florida Panthers defender Mackenzie Weegar. It’s just another name on the list of bumps and bruises that Golden Knights have to pack in their snowpacks this season.

At 25, Eshel is still young and in the prime of his life. This upcoming season will be Eichel’s first attempt in an 82-game season since 2018-19 as 19-20 was wiped out due to COVID and on 20-21 and 21-22 he was still suffering from a neck injury.

A clean record awaits Eichel and the rest of the Golden Knights in 2022-23. Last season was plagued by injuries and uncontrollable factors that would damage the chances of any team. Having Bruce Cassidy’s ability to put together a healthy streak of Eichel, Stone and Pacioretty would definitely change this team.

Thursday’s trade gave Dadonov’s trade a breath of fresh air in terms of the comfort of the cover space, but they still have some work to do if they want to quit guys like Riley Smith and Nicholas Roy. Eichel’s $10 million hit is a huge hurdle for general manager Kelly McCremon, but it might be worth it.

I think we’re seeing Jack Eichel re-establish himself as a top 10 player in the NHL next season. He used last season as a base frame, allowing him to get back into the daily groove of being an NHL’er once again. Next season, he should return to the level of 60-80 points.

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