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NHL Rumors: Evander Kane Could Sign Oilers Contract If He Avoids Suspension

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 20, 2022

San Jose Barracuda's Evander Kane speaks at a news conference after a hockey practice in San Jose, Calif., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. The Barracudas are the minor league affiliate of the San Jose Sharks. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

Evander Kane has not played an NHL game this season, but he reportedly could be returning to the ice for a new team pending the outcome of a league investigation.

Darren Dreger of TSN reported there remains "a decent chance" the left-winger will sign with the Edmonton Oilers if he avoids a significant suspension. He also said the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning "remain in the mix," although things could change if the NHL gives him a lengthy penalty.

TSN @TSN_Sports

.<a href="https://twitter.com/DarrenDreger?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DarrenDreger</a>: If Evander Kane avoids suspension, there's 'a decent chance' he'll sign with the Oilers. <a href="https://t.co/OADADZbwj2">pic.twitter.com/OADADZbwj2</a>

In November ESPN's Greg Wyshynski wrote about Kane's 2021, including his 21-game suspension for violating the NHL's COVID-19 protocols because he submitted a fake vaccination card.

What's more, the league investigated after his estranged wife, Anna Kane, made allegations of domestic violence and that he bet on NHL games. The NHL said the allegations of assault "could not be substantiated" and determined there was no evidence he bet on hockey games.

The Sharks placed Kane on waivers, which he cleared, and then reassigned him to their AHL affiliate, the Barracuda.

San Jose then announced on Jan. 8 it placed him on unconditional waivers and would terminate his contract, citing a "breach of his NHL Standard Player Contract and for violation of the AHL COVID-19 protocols."

The NHL's ongoing investigation into Kane is related to this breach of protocols. Per Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman, the league is looking into a border crossing made by Kane from the U.S. into Canada in December.

Still, ESPN's Kevin Weekes reported "most" teams that are realistically in contention for the Stanley Cup gauged interest from Kane's camp. 

Pierre LeBrun of TSN said the left-winger's agent, Dan Milstein, said the plan is to sign a one-year deal for the rest of the 2021-22 campaign.

Kane played for the Atlanta Thrashers, Buffalo Sabres and Sharks from the 2009-10 season. He appeared in 56 games for San Jose in 2020-21 and finished with 49 points on 22 goals and 27 assists.

The Oilers are 18-15-2 on the season for 38 points, which is good enough for seventh place in the Pacific Division.