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NHL Rumors: Evander Kane Contacted by 'Most' Contenders After Sharks Release

Erin WalshJanuary 12, 2022

Matt Cohen/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Former San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane has reportedly been contacted by "most" Stanley Cup contenders after being released earlier this week, per ESPN's Kevin Weekes

Weekes adds that teams are "doing their due diligence" by speaking with players who have played with Kane in addition to his agent.

The Sharks terminated Kane's contract on Sunday, citing a breach of his contract for violating the American Hockey League's COVID-19 protocols. He was sent to the team's AHL affiliate after serving a 21-game suspension for submitting a fake COVID-19 vaccination card. 

In addition to violating COVID-19 protocols, Kane was investigated for domestic assault after allegations made by his estranged wife, Anna Kane. The NHL later announced that her allegations "could not be substantiated."

Anna Kane also accused the Sharks forward of betting on his own NHL games. The league investigated and found no evidence that he did so. 

According to ESPN's Emily Kaplan, the Sharks had been trying to trade Kane over the last several months and that several teams expressed interest in acquiring the veteran. San Jose was even willing to retain some of his $7 million salary, but nothing came to fruition. 

Now that his client is on the market, Kane's agent, Dan Milstein, recently told The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun that he will sign a one-year deal for the remainder of the 2021-22 season. TSN's Gord Miller added Kane could have a new contract by the end of this week. 

The Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver Canucks, Toronto Maple Leafs, Carolina Hurricanes, Tampa Bay Lightning and Vegas Golden Knights have been linked to the 30-year-old. According to CapFriendly, the Golden Knights have the most cap space of any of the teams mentioned at almost $5 million. However, they have that space because of players on long-term injured reserve. 

Kane, who was drafted fourth overall in 2009, still has plenty of gas left in the tank and would be a solid addition for any Stanley Cup contender. The Vancouver native tallied 22 goals and 27 assists in 56 games last season. 

The 6'2", 210-pound Kane has tallied at least 20 goals in seven of his 12 NHL seasons (and scored 19 goals twice) and has recorded more than 50 points in two times. His best season came during the 2011-12 campaign when he tallied a career-high 30 goals and 27 assists in 74 games for the Winnipeg Jets. 

Kane has also been serviceable in the postseason, tallying six goals and seven assists in 29 playoff games. 

The left wing has tallied 264 goals and 242 assists in 769 career games.  

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