Free agent Patrick Kane and his agent, Pat Brisson, are doing their due diligence and meeting with clubs that could be a fit for the star forward the remainder of the 2023-24 season. The 35-year-old has already met with the Toronto Maple Leafs, and more teams are in the mix, including Detroit Red Wings, Buffalo Sabres and Florida Panthers as potential landing spots It’s been said that Kane would meet with a total of eight teams, however, TSN’s Darren Dreger reports that the Kane camp hopes to cut that list down by this weekend and could reach a decision by early next week.
There is a feeling that the Sabres and the Panthers have surfaced as front-runners. Buffalo is in a unique position to be able to sign him to a multi-year contract thanks to their available cap space, more than $6 million. While the attraction to sign home (with a hefty contract) could be a huge tipping point for Kane, it is well known that he would prefer signing with a contender in order to get his hands on a fourth championship ring before hanging up the skates.
The Panthers, who Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman pointed out are being particularly aggressive in their attempt to sign Kane to a deal, could make sense in terms of timing for a Stanley Cup. After all, he watched Florida go on a run to the trophy last year. Both clubs have been in touch with the veteran fowrard since the summer.
The Red Wings are also in the mix since Kane would love to play once again with star forward Alex DeBrincat, but Detroit could be cut if Showtime does not consider them enough of a contender to make the move. The same could be said of the Maple Leafs, though rumours claimed that Kane did meet with management in Toronto earlier this week. Those rumours get denied when John Shannon was informed that the meeting never took place.
There are reports that also claim the Carolina Hurricanes, Dallas Stars and Tampa Bay Lightning could be in the bidding while we already know that the New York Rangers have been ruled out of the sweepstakes. Kane’s former club, who had previously been linked to the forward, has recently informed Larry Brooks of the New York Post that the team is not pursuing the three-time Stanley Cup champion.
The list will be cut down in the coming days and before we know it, it will be announced where Kane will play next.
You better stay tuned!