Jan 19: It does not appear as though a decision is going to be made on Kane for a few more days. Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet tweets that the NHL needs the rest of the week to finish their investigation. That would suggest there will not be an update on his playing status or new contract until next week at the earliest. Kane remains an unrestricted free agent for the moment.
Jan 12: Ever since the San Jose Sharks filed the papers to terminate Evander Kane’s contract, speculation has run rampant over where the power forward would next ply his trade. The Edmonton Oilers were immediately linked and general manager Ken Holland confirmed that he had spoken to Kane’s representatives during a press conference yesterday.
The Tampa Bay Lightning were also rumored as a contender for his services, but Joe Smith of The Athletic reported last night that after consideration, they have removed themselves from the running. The Lightning don’t have any cap space to work with and general manager Julien BriseBois explained to reporters today (including Smith), that they aren’t even expecting to make any deadline moves this season because of the financial constraints.
So with some options dropping out and others confirming their interest, Kane’s agent Dan Milstein tweeted yesterday that they were still interviewing with teams and there were still plenty of details to work out.
One of those details could be another league investigation, as Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reports that the league is looking into the incident that caused Kane’s termination in the first place. That is the process of Kane crossing the border into Canada on December 29, eight days after testing positive for COVID-19. San Jose says he did not have proper medical clearance and the NHL is investigating the incident. Friedman believes it will prevent Kane from signing in the short-term, though doesn’t give a timeline on when the investigation will be resolved.
The league of course has already gone through several Kane-focused investigations over the last few months, with two–gambling and domestic abuse–resulting in a dismissal of the allegations and one–use of a fake vaccination card–resulting in a 21-game suspension.
Kane has until the trade deadline to sign a new contract in order to be eligible for the playoffs this season.