The Chicago Blackhawks have not had trade discussions involving veteran winger Patrick Kane despite a story stating otherwise, according to The Athletic's Mark Lazerus.
The report came out after David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period wrote Friday that Chicago had been "engaged in trade discussions with teams" about Kane and that the Dallas Stars were among the teams to have expressed interest recently.
Trade rumors involving both Kane and Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews erupted around the 2022 NHL draft when the franchise signaled it was entering a full-fledged rebuild by trading some of its best young players.
Chicago dealt Alex DeBrincat to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for three draft picks, including the 2022 No. 7 pick that was used to select defenseman Kevin Korchinski.
The Blackhawks also traded Kirby Dach to the Montreal Canadiens for two draft picks, including the 2022 No. 13 pick that was used to select center Frank Nazar. In addition, the team drafted defenseman Sam Rinzel with the 25th pick.
Kane is under contract with the Blackhawks for one more season at $10.5 million. TSN's Darren Dreger reported July 20 that the alternate captain was undecided on whether he wanted to request a trade from the franchise.
The 33-year-old has spent his entire 15-year career with the Blackhawks, helping the franchise win three Stanley Cups from 2010-15 and being named to a season-ending All-Star at right wing four times.
In 1,107 games with the Blackhawks, Kane has tallied 430 goals and 750 assists for 1,180 points. He hasn't skipped a beat, either, notching 92 points (26 goals, 66 assists) in 78 games during the 2021-22 season.
If he does decide he wants to move on, he'll be one of the top wingers available.
As for Toews, he recently said in an interview with Lazerus that sticking around for a rebuild "doesn't sound appealing to me at all." However, the 34-year-old acknowledged that he was unsure about what the future holds:
"I can't speak for 'Kaner,' but I definitely feel that the amount of turnover our team has gone through every single year these last three or four years, that's where it gets really, really draining. And exhausting. You have a guy like who was under Kaner's wing. And I like to think that Kirby and I had that bond in some ways too. And out they go, out the door. Over and over, we've seen that turnover.
"I'm learning to be more patient, but there's no doubt that timeline is pretty daunting, and pretty exhausting to think about. So, I'm not going to sit here and say what I'm going to do or what the future holds for me, because I really don't know."
The center is also under contract for one more season at $10.5 million. If both players depart the franchise this summer or at some point during the 2022-23 season, it will officially be the end of an era in Chicago.