Actually yes, You need to look closely at what protocol you are talking to the Drives,SAS and nvme are completely different interface protocols. You need a SAS hba, like the 9440 you ordered.
and ignore the (old known fact) SATA and SAS "Cables".
Like the new "MegaRAID 9440-8i Tri-Mode Storage Adapter is a 12Gb/s SAS/SATA/PCIe (NVMe) " controller cards enable you to connect either Sata/sas/nvme devices to the same Controller with the same "SAS" cables. While in fact this specific Drive speaks NVME over the "SAS" Cable. (While still can speak SAS and even SATA to a connected Drive)
Also all Linux partitiontools DO NOT make any changes to the partitiontable until you commit/write the new Partitiontable to disk. (which fdisk even warns you about when you start it)
Also, since it looks like you somewhat know your way around Linux, read through the full bootmessage for some kind of hint whats going on.
I one time had a similar encounter with a Hard Drive using an "hpa" (=Host protected Area) which is some kind of internal Firmware mechanism to shortstroke a Drive by only exposing a certein size of it to the operating system.
For me it looks like something similar has been done here.