The Sabres "lost" the NHL lottery and drafted Jack Eichel with the 2nd overall pick. While many think that McDavid will end up being a better player than Eichel, that does not mean he's going to be a bigger star.
Jack Eichel signed a mega deal with Leaf Trading Cards, breaking the record for the biggest autograph deal in NHL history. Eichel got more money than Sidney Crosby, Connor McDavid, Alex Ovechkin, or any superstar to ever enter the league. This is the first time we've seen a company trying to use Eichel's potential star power to enhance their business.
Leaf's CEO Brian Gray called Eichel "the most NHL ready player of the 2015 draft" and the "greatest American prospect of all-time". He talked up Eichel as the guy he wanted to be the face of his company. Not McDavid.
This mentality is going to transfer to the entire national media. When Crosby and Ovechkin entered the league a decade ago, NBC and ESPN jumped on the opportunity to have the games next superstars playing in the east. Stars playing at 7 p.m. on a nightly basis gives NBC the opportunity to have stars on in primetime slots, and gives ESPN to put the stars on that night's edition of Sports Center. Eichel can have the same advantage versus McDavid who mine as well be on Mars as far as the national media is concerned.
An added advantage that Eichel has is that he is American. He can be marketed as "America's superstar". Patrick Kane is arguably not even one of the best ten players in the NHL, however he's consistently thought of as one of the best in the league why? Because the media has talked him up for his entire career. Ryan Miller had one elite year and that's it. ESPN and NBC picked up his Olympic performance and his Vezina performance and promoted him to no end. Eichel will get the same treatment.
McDavid is going to have more trouble. Edmonton plays almost all of their games at 10 p.m. Eastern time, meaning they will almost never be on primetime in the East. Classic teams in the Western Conference are few and far between, and Edmonton isn't rivals with any of them. While Eichel plays Boston, Toronto, Montreal, the Rangers, the Flyers, etc. Edmonton will be playing Calgary, Vancouver, San Jose, Arizona, etc.
McDavid may have the slight upper hand to be a better player, although I would argue that, Eichel will have the spotlight. While Buffalo is a very small city, it is still in the U.S., it is near the largest cities on the continent, and it is not in upper Alberta.