Chatter surrounding Patrick Kane has been more than all over the place. Last week, reports emerged that the Chicago Blackhawks star forward was on the trade block, but were then quickly denied by sources close to the team. The question remains: does Kane want to be part of the rebuild in Chicago? These past months have brought forth significant changes in Chicago. Blackhawks GM Kyle Davidson pulled off two large trades on the draft floor in Montreal. First up, Davidson traded star forward Alex DeBrincat to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for the 7th overall pick, a 2nd round and a 3rd pick. Then Davidson shipped out former 3rd overall pick Kirby Dach to the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for the 13th overall pick and another 2nd round pick. In essence, the Blackhawks loaded up on draft picks by shipping out DeBrincat and Dach.
Kane might want out, though if a trade takes place, many insiders believe it could be closer to the trade deadline when contenders look to add on veteran presence and leadership.
But after that? Nobody knows what Kane’s plans will be following this season as he becomes an unrestricted free agent. Lance Lysowski of the Buffalo News wonders if Kane could be tempted to sign with the Sabres. He believes Kane could be a fit under the right circumstances.
“Kane is still an elite player who would fit perfectly on the ice. Don Granato coached him in Chicago and General Manager Kevyn Adams roomed with Kane at the South Buffalo native’s first NHL training camp. For this to work next summer, Kane must be willing to come on a short-term contract that doesn’t take away precious cap space in future seasons.”
However, Lysowski believes now is not the time to bring Kane on board.
“To address all the chatter on social media, Kane isn’t a fit for Buffalo this summer. Even if the Blackhawks decide to move him, any trade requires a haul of draft picks and prospects. The Sabres don’t want to part with those yet.”
Kane might want to finish his NHL career in his hometown, but the Sabres might be better off waiting for free agency next summer instead of taking up a big chunk out of their cap space and having to give up promising young assets in a trade with Chicago.
Kane reportedly hasn’t reached the stage yet where he’s willing to waive his no-movement clause, but he might be tempted closer to the trade deadline. I’m sure he can think about coming home to Buffalo ahead of the summer of 2023.