Forward Evander Kane is nothing if not the most polarizing and interesting free agent on the market this offseason. The 30-year-old power forward has had his fair share of off-ice controversies in his career, including a pending arbitration hearing that may award him back to the San Jose Sharks after the team terminated his contract during the 2021-22 season. Yet Kane was still spectacular on the ice after signing a one-year deal with the Edmonton Oilers for the remainder of the season, notching 39 points in 43 regular-season games and leading the NHL in scoring during the playoffs with 13 goals in just 15 games.
Yet, reports surfaced earlier this week that Kane and the Oilers weren’t close on an extension. Today, The Fourth Period’s David Pagnotta adds that there haven’t been any conversations yet today between Kane’s camp and the Oilers, adding to the likelihood Kane hits the open market tomorrow. It doesn’t limit Edmonton’s ability to re-sign him, and quite frankly, it’s still the most likely destination for him. Kane’s risk factor is only increased by the pending arbitration decision, and other teams will be hesitant to commit term to Kane without either having a deal in place with San Jose to trade back for him or having clarity on his future.
- Legendary coach and executive Scott Bowman is moving on from the Chicago Blackhawks organization this summer, per the man himself. Now 88, Bowman had been a senior advisor for the Blackhawks since 2008. A winner of 12 Stanley Cups, Bowman will likely have any job he wants if he wants to continue his management career in the NHL.
- Pittsburgh Penguins president of hockey operations Brian Burke spoke today, denying rumors that the team didn’t offer Evgeni Malkin his desired term of four years. He did say that giving a six-year contract extension to Rickard Rakell yesterday didn’t rule out Malkin’s return, and said that “the window is still open” for Malkin. However, with all the varying reports of Malkin’s unhappiness with the situation, his moving on in free agency is likely still a done deal.