Evander Kane Traded to Sabres: Latest Details, Comments and Reaction

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistFebruary 11, 2015

The Winnipeg Jets' Evander Kane  during warm-up prior to an NFL hockey game against the Philadelphia Flyers, Thursday, Jan 29, 2015., in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Tom Mihalek)
Tom Mihalek/Associated Press

Evander Kane's rocky relationship with the Winnipeg Jets has come to a close, as the Buffalo Sabres acquired the talented forward Wednesday.

The Jets confirmed the deal via their Twitter account:

Craig Custance of ESPN The Magazine first reported the deal.

Kane has had a bizarre 2014-15 season, to be sure. In early February, he was a healthy scratch after a bizarre set of circumstances outlined by Katie Strang of ESPN.com:

It was revealed Thursday that Kane had violated team dress code by wearing a tracksuit, rather than a dress suit, to the rink for the team's morning skate. According to reports, Kane's teammate Dustin Byfuglien then threw his clothes in a shower, presumably to teach him a lesson about the breach in protocol.

Kane was reportedly upset about Byfuglien's actions and was unreachable to the team in the hours leading up to the game. After he missed both the team bus and a pregame meeting, the Jets told him to not bother showing him up to the game, [head coach coach Paul Maurice] confirmed to reporters Friday.

Not long after, it was announced Kane was undergoing shoulder surgery and would likely be out for the remainder of the season.

Kane was having a solid if unspectacular season for Winnipeg, scoring 10 goals and adding 12 assists in 37 games. Still, he became a hot name on the trade market once it became clear he and the Jets weren't a great fit.

He has been described as "fiercely independent" by Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, who talked to multiple executives, coaches and former teammates. They all painted the picture of a talented player who has a hard time fitting into the team dynamic and didn't get along with many of his teammates in Winnipeg.

Kane has spent his entire six-year career with the organization after being selected No. 4 overall in the 2009 draft. There was no doubt multiple teams would have interest in a 23-year-old who has yet to live up to his full potential but has tantalized with obvious upside and skill.

Buffalo is getting a bit of an enigma, but he still has the ability to be one of the best power forwards in the NHL. Perhaps a change of scenery is just what Kane needs to take that next step.

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