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Taylor Hall weighs in on ex-teammate Eichel: 'I know Jack is frustrated'

·3-min read
NEWARK, NJ - FEBRUARY 20:  Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (9) and Buffalo Sabres left wing Taylor Hall (4) skate during the National Hockey League game between the New Jersey Devils and the Buffalo Sabres on February 20, 2021 at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.  (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Jack Eichel is fed up with the Buffalo Sabres, and his former teammate Taylor Hall provided some insight into what Buffalo's captain is thinking. (Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Taylor Hall had an insider's view of what went on behind closed doors during the Buffalo Sabres’ tumultuous 2020-21 season, including the Jack Eichel injury fiasco.

While only a member of the Sabres for 37 games, it was certainly an eventful and disappointing stint with the team. During his tenure with Buffalo, Hall formed a friendship with the disgruntled Sabres captain and has an idea on what he’s going through right now with regards to his injured neck.

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"I know Jack [Eichel] is frustrated,” Hall said. "Jack and I became really, really good friends during our time in Buffalo, and I support him. I know he’s gone through some stuff with the medical staff there and ultimately Jack has to worry about himself. 

"There’s teams that they’re gonna worry, just like he said, they’re gonna worry about what’s best for them and Jack has to do what’s best for him, and I know he’s got an injury that he feels he can take care of with a surgery, and there’s a little bit of a disagreement, but I support Jack and he was nothing but a great teammate and a really good friend when I played with him."

Hall’s comments regarding Eichel’s health came on the same day Eichel voiced his displeasure with regards to how the Sabres organization has handled his neck injury. Eichel noted in his statement that his goal is to get healthy to play hockey for the 2021-22 season “wherever that might be.”

The former first-overall pick also discussed his personal experience playing in Buffalo earlier this year, an underwhelming 37 games that resulted in just two goals and 19 points.

"There were some really dark days this year in Buffalo,” Hall explained. "I haven’t really talked a lot about it but I didn’t play well, I don’t have anyone else to blame for my play in Buffalo other than myself. Just didn’t work out. I came in prepared, I came in, I worked hard, and for whatever reason we just didn’t have it. We had a great group of guys, the chemistry in the locker room was great. When it was time to perform in the game, I didn’t do my job and I’m sure a lot of guys would say the same thing."

As a native of North Chelmsford, Massachusetts and a noted Bruins fan as a kid, Eichel certainly has to be at least a little envious of the success Hall has had since being traded to Boston at the NHL trade deadline.

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