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Longtime Sabre Hecht signs two-year deal in Germany

Dec 11, 2012, 11:40 AM EDT

jochenhechtap AP

Veteran forward Jochen Hecht has signed a two-year deal with Adler Mannheim of the German league, according to the team website.

Hecht, 35, was without an NHL contract after his four-year, $14.1 million deal with Buffalo expired in June.

A former team captain, Hecht spent the last nine seasons with the Sabres organization and was the active leader in games played, with 566.

His two-year pact with Mannheim sounds similar to the one Colorado’s Ryan O’Reilly signed in the KHL last week — O’Reilly reportedly has an out clause allowing his return to the NHL should he receive a contract offer.

Here are the Google-translated details of Hecht’s deal, from the Mannheim website:

Jochen Hecht has today signed a contract with the eagles to the end of season 2013/2014, of course, guaranteed him an NHL-out, should an offer of an NHL club there and take it there.

It’ll be interesting to see if Hecht garners any NHL interest based on his play in Germany. He was sidelined for most of 2011-12 with a concussion but, when healthy, can be an effective offensive contributor.

He’s just two years removed from a 21-goal, 42-point campaign with the Sabres in 2009-10.

  1. tarotsujimoto74 - Dec 11, 2012 at 11:54 AM

    I like the guy and wish him the best, but he was not nearly worth his salary the last couple seasons.

  2. thedavesiknowiknow - Dec 11, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    I respect the “heck” out of Hecht. He took a beating in several ways in Buffalo. For all the praise Mike Peca is still receiving from the fans here, Hecht pretty much delivered the same two-way game (with less offensive talent being an important caviat) without the salary, praise, and without the petty hold-out for what wound up being pennies to an athlete- to practically no fan-fare. All things considered, he was what you’d probably call a “good” 3rd line guy, or a great 4th line guy- who was a more than capable penalty killer and reliable defensively. Hecht was pretty much more Tim Connolly than Tim Connolly was- seeing as the majority of the time T.C. was “injured” (going into his last season he had missed 58% of Sabres games) Hecht took his spot at center, and filled in respectably despite not really being a center. Particularly in the last year, where Hecht has had (reportedly) 3 severe concussions, and what was described as a “frightening” breakdown, it seemed pretty evident that his time here was at an end. I’m a bit surprised he’s not giving up the game entirely, but always appreciated the finer points of his game.

  3. lukasksg - Dec 11, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    The season when the Sabres made it to the conference finals against Carolina after the lockout, TSN did a special during one of the games and polled each NHL GM on “if you could take 1 Sabre off their roster, who would you take?”… Hecht won with the most votes. Says a lot about the player.

    • thedavesiknowiknow - Dec 12, 2012 at 12:16 AM

      Wow: I definitely missed that. Indeed though, that kind of player.

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