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Agent: Jack Eichel, Sabres near agreement for neck treatment

Mar 4, 2021; Uniondale, New York, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (9) plays the puck against New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Sabres and captain Jack Eichel may finally have reached common ground regarding the next steps for treating Eichel’s herniated disk in his neck.

“We have definitely been communicating with the team and we are heading towards a resolution,” Eichel’s agent, Peter Fish, told The Athletic via email on Thursday.

Eichel, 24, had indicated his preference for surgery — reportedly a disk replacement — but said the Sabres disagreed with that route and wanted him to rehab the injury instead.

Buffalo general manager Kevyn Adams told reporters Thursday the club has not changed its perspective, adding that he did have a long talk recently with Eichel and his agent.

“Our stance hasn’t changed and where we’re at. It’s in the hands of the medical experts,” Adams said. “That’s what I said previously and it’s where we’re at right now. That’s the best I can give you.”

Eichel, whose $80 million contract has five years remaining, last played March 7.

In May, the signs of a disagreement were clear.

“Now, it’s been speculated and discussed from Jack’s camp about potentially having a surgery that’s never been done on a National Hockey League player before,” Adams said at the time. “Our doctors aren’t comfortable with that.”

An agreed-upon rest-and-rehab period has now concluded.

–Field Level Media