I don't think any fan of the National Hockey League, regardless of what team you cheer for, would be surprised to hear me suggest that veteran NHL forward Evander Kane has established a rather unfavorable reputation for himself during his time in the league.
Kane has almost always been a source of controversy, regardless of what team he played for, with the undeniably talented winger often making headlines for all of the wrong reasons with his antics both on and off the ice. This has led to headaches for both fans and Kane alike but perhaps no one has suffered more than the teams that made the decision to bring Kane into their mix.
The latest example of this may be the San Jose Sharks, whom according to one NHL insider may now be dealing with a brand new series of headaches thanks to the controversial forward. President of the Professional Writer Hockey Association, Frank Seravalli, recently published an article in which he listed a number of players that he believes could be traded in this upcoming offseason and much to my surprise Kane was on that list. The most interesting part of this wasn't Kane simply making the list however, but rather Seravalli's explanation for how Kane has ended up there after one of the best seasons of his NHL career.
Scoop: Doug Wilson is navigating choppy waters in the Bay Area. Sources indicate significant friction built up between Kane and a number of his teammates last season, frustration that was expressed clearly to management in exit interviews.
This is the first we're hearing of Kane causing trouble in the Sharks' locker room, but there's little doubting Seravalli's credibility on this matter. Not only is Seravalli a credible insider but there's also the matter of Kane's long history in the league to consider, a history that contains plenty of locker room friction within it.
Most fans will remember the alleged, and now infamous, incident that took place when Kane was a member of the Winnipeg Jets. Kane reportedly flaunted team rules only to have teammate Dustin Byfuglien dump his clothes in the shower as punishment, a move that led to Kane allegedly refusing to play in the next game and a trade out of Winnipeg just one week later.
Will the friction in the locker room once again lead to a trade? Kane carries a hefty cap hit but is coming off a season in which he recorded 22 goals and 27 assists, a combined 49 points, in just 56 games. That is the kind of production other teams would kill for, and he managed to put up those numbers on a team that failed to even contend for a playoff spot.