Eichel: ‘I want to be a Sabre for a long time’

Posted: 19/04/2017 in NHL, Sports
Tags: , , , ,
 eichel-hockey
 

Jack Eichel wants to put himself on the record.

The young Buffalo Sabres center saw his name in the headlines Wednesday when it was reported he has no desire to sign a contract extension this summer if Dan Bylsma is still employed as head coach.

Eichel’s agent, Peter Fish, quickly called the report “ridiculous,” and now Eichel himself has attempted to set things straight in an interview with John Vogl of the Buffalo News.

“I want to be a Sabre and I want to be a Sabre for a long time and I want to be a part of Buffalo when we win,” Eichel said. “I know it’s an organization that is capable of doing that, and I want to be a part of it, and I want to be a centerpiece of it.”

As to whether that’s contingent on who’s behind the bench, Eichel appears to be all about looking at himself in the mirror first and foremost.

“I definitely am not the type of guy to point the finger and blame other people,” he said. “I said in my exit interview and I’ll say it again, it’s self-reflection. You’ve got to look yourself in the mirror before you can call out other guys.

“I said it all year, if you want to be a leader and be vocal, you’ve got to play well yourself. For me, I don’t think I was good enough this year, so I need to be better. The onus is on me.”

In terms of the initial report, Eichel said he’s dumbfounded as to where that could have emanated from, insisting he never said anything of the sort.

He further echoed his agent in saying he believed his exit interviews with general manager Tim Murray and Bylsma went well, something he admits his body language may not have expressed in his statements to the media prior to heading out of town.

Still, Wednesday’s report came quite out of the blue.

“I think I told (Bylsma) some things that I think as a group we can all improve on. He was very receptive. I don’t think what’s being said about the way things ended is accurate in any way.”

Eichel has one year remaining on his entry-level contract and can sign a long-term contract extension that would begin in 2018-19 as early as July 1.

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