The Buffalo Sabres were able to land Taylor Hall at a reasonable one-year $8 million deal getting Jack Eichel some much-needed help.
Going into the off-season we talked about why the Sabres needed to get their captain and best player some much-needed help. It’s tough to find an issue with getting a former Hart Trophy winner signed to a one-year, $8 million.
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Now it seems like it’ll be up to the team to convince Hall to stay with the team past this season. Having him play with a top center in Eichel is definitely a good start but with this move comes expectations and a need to address other areas.
Talking to reporters, general manager Kevyn Adams said that Eichel was a big selling point to bring Hall to the Sabres along with head coach Ralph Krueger who coached him in Edmonton. This is significant because Buffalo’s reputation is well known and that didn’t scare Hall away.
This is the wingers fourth team so far which is not exactly what you want to see from a former first overall pick but you can’t blame him for his exit out of Edmonton. He got off to a good start with the New Jersey Devils but the team needed to get assets back and traded him to the Arizona Coyotes who also struggled to make things work with Phil Kessel.
What better way to re-establish your value than with Eichel who helped Jeff Skinner secure a nice payday. He will also get his best chance to not be the go-to player and in this situation, he’ll be the No. 2 behind Eichel.
It also says something that teams like the Montreal Canadiens, Nashville Predators and even the Colorado Avalanche couldn’t convince Hall to sign with them. At the same time, we don’t know what the offers were but it still something to keep in mind.
For Buffalo, the risk in this deal is almost non-existent and if it works out, you wonder what this does to the team’s future plans. Maybe some other free agents see the Sabres as an intriguing landing spot.
At least, going into this season, there is some relief in knowing that the Sabres prioritized the supporting cast around Eichel and came away with some necessary upgrades so far.
What are your thoughts on the Hall signing? Who should the Sabres look at adding going forward? Let us know in the comments below.