Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel aren't looking for sympathy. Only wins.

Unfortunately for each of them, those have been few and far between this season.

It was 29 months ago that McDavid was taken by the Edmonton Oilers with the No. 1 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft and Eichel was taken at No. 2 by the Buffalo Sabres. They were viewed as franchise players, the foundations that would pave the way to lucrative futures for the Oilers and Sabres.

But the start of the 2017-18 season has been tough for McDavid's Oilers and Eichel's Sabres, two teams that have yet to reach the expectations lumped on them when training camps opened 10 weeks ago.

After the Sabres defeated the Oilers 3-1 at KeyBank Center on Friday, Edmonton and Buffalo had a combined record of 14-26-6, a losing mark McDavid and Eichel each find unacceptable.

"I don't think you can feel sorry for yourself at all," said McDavid, 20, who won the Hart Trophy as League MVP with 100 points (30 goals, 70 assists) last season. "We're the ones who got ourselves in this and we're the ones who's going to get ourselves out.

"We're learning about going through this. A lot of guys in this room, myself included, haven't gone the other way where we've expected to be good and we weren't very good. That's a new thing for a lot of guys. Like anyone else, it's not fun.

"It's not fun to come to the rink and lose."

The Oilers have stumbled to an 8-13-2 start this season with a minus-17 goal differential.

After the Oilers came within one win of reaching the Western Conference Final last season, hopes in the organization and among the fans were high that the Oilers would rocket out of the gate, not stagger.