Sabres, Jack Eichel agree to eight-year, $80M extension

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The Buffalo Sabres made it official: they signed Jack Eichel to an eight-year, $80 million extension right before the opening of the 2017-18 season.

Note that Eichel still needs to burn the final year of his entry-level contract, so that $10M cap hit kicks in starting in 2018-19.

Rejoice, Sabres fans. You won’t need to spend more time in suspense regarding the future of this franchise’s most important player.

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Hockey Twitter was abuzz after NBC Sports’ Kathryn Tappen stated that the Buffalo Sabres are about to announce a long-term deal with Jack Eichel, with a wide variety of reporters quickly backing Tappen up. As updates have shown, that tweet turned out to be correct.

Here’s the Tappen tweet of note:

 

Eichel, 20, is about to enter the final year of his entry-level contract, so that extension wouldn’t begin until 2018-19. Cap Friendly projects Buffalo’s 2018-19 cap spending to about $46.56M as of this moment, so Eichel would bump them to somewhere in the area of $56-58 million.

It’s easy to see this price tag for Eichel and wince, yet there’s a strong chance he’s worth it, from both and on-ice and PR standpoints. The Sabres might also note cases like those of Leon Draisaitl, imagining that waiting could cost them even more money.