The NHL Network is rolling through its offseason programming, and recently aired its list of “Top 20 Centers Right Now”.
Among the vaunted group, which was topped by draftmate Connor McDavid, superstar center Sidney Crosby and featured former Buffalo Sabres forward Ryan O’Reilly, is Sabres captain Jack Eichel.
Hosts Jamie Hersch and Mike Johnson took a hard look at the 2018-19 season, and included the past few years in their evaluation. The pair also forecast the 2019-20 season, projecting performances for the centers on the list.
Eichel was ranked as the 15th center in the NHL - the same place he resided in for last year’s countdown.
Johnson said, “He’s adding more maturity, more consistency. He had career highs in goals, assists [and] points. …He’s got a great release. I would be disappointed if I don’t see him score 30-plus goals this year to go with his 85 or so points.”
The full conversation regarding Eichel can be seen below, and other countdown highlights are viewable here.
Episodes pick up again on August 11, when the crew will resume its countdown - reviewing the “Top 20 Wings”.
Future programming will include Top 10 Goalies, and a rolling “Top 50 Players Right Now” that will carry through September. Fans can vote for their favorite players on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.