Sabres captain Jack Eichel excited to play with Taylor Hall


FILE – In this Feb. 17, 2020, file photo, Arizona Coyotes left wing Taylor Hall (91) is shown during the first period of an NHL hockey game against the New York Islanders, in Glendale, Ariz. The NHL is embarking on a free agent period like never before in hockey history. Defensemen Alex Pietrangelo and Torey Krug and winger Taylor Hall headline a talented free agent class. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri, File)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Jack Eichel has been missing a strong supporting cast around him but this season he gained former league MVP as his new linemate when the Sabres signed Taylor Hall.

“It was obviously an exciting moment for our franchise, for the city. He’s in the top caliber of players in our league and MVP for a reason so I think he’s gonna bring a lot to our group and someone that’s played in our league for a while and I think he can bring a lot of experience off the ice as well as on the ice,” Sabres captain Jack Eichel said.

“I was probably as excited as everyone else was and I think it’s gonna be a huge help for us.”

In October, Hall signed a one-year deal worth $8 million as the Buffalo landed the most sought-after free agent forward on the market.

Even though Hall said head coach Ralph Krueger didn’t tell him he will exclusively play with Eichel, the thought is Hall will slide in at left wing alongside Eichel on their top line, making a dangerous combination. Back when they signed Hall, Krueger said the possibility of those two playing on the same line will be “lethal.”

“I’ve watched Hallsy a little bit over the past few years and especially the year he won the MVP. I think everyone was kind of following him through his point streak and how good of a season he was having. I think Hallsy’s an interesting player. He’s somebody who is super high in talent but I think one thing that goes unnoticed is his work ethic,” Eichel explained.

With the Devils, Hall scored a career-high 39 goals and career-high 93 points during his MVP season and now brings that experience and talent to the Sabres that have lacked secondary scoring over the years.

“He’s able to track down a lot of pucks, he’s hard on the forecheck, he can be physical at times. I think he creates a lot by himself by just how fast he is, how strong he is on the puck and I think it’s gonna be really important for our team to get a guy like that,” Eichel said.

“I think it’ll be good in all aspects of the game. I think with our power play he can add a really good dimension to that, I think he can add a dimension to out 5-on-5 game and just to have an older guy who’s obviously been in the league for a while I think it will be important in our locker room as well.”

We’ll get our first look at Hall with the Sabres on Friday as they hit the ice for the first time this training camp.

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