Evander Kane has been the subject of controversy for many months. Back in July of 2021, Kane’s wife accused him of gambling on his games through a series of Instagram stories. After the NHL investigated the allegations, they found no conclusive evidence that he gambled on his games, but a second investigation began shortly after.
Kane was accused of submitting a fake COVID-19 vaccination card, something illegal in the United States and Canada, as well as a violation of NHL rules. However, unlike the first investigation, he was found guilty. As a result, Kane was suspended 21 games for violation of the league’s COVID-19 protocols.
After being placed on waivers and spending a few weeks on the San Jose Barracuda, Kane received a positive COVID-19 test. However, according to Kevin Kurz of The Athletic, Kane once again broke league protocols by traveling to Vancouver while testing positive for COVID-19. On January 8th, 2022, the San Jose Sharks announced that Evander Kane’s contract was terminated due to the violations.
The San Jose Sharks have parted ways with Evander Kane
Kane has continued to be a thorn in the side of the Sharks for months. Despite being a consistent point-producer, he consistently found himself wrapped up in serious accusations. Before his time in San Jose, he had garnered a reputation as a disruptive player, and that was no more evident than the last few months of his time as a Shark. Accusation after accusation left management no choice but to have him removed from the organization.
Luckily for the Sharks, there is no penalty for the termination of Kane’s contract. The money they had been spending on his contract until the 2024-25 season has been taken off the books.
Since the Sharks are considering rebuilding; having that cap space free will allow them to take on more contracts for assets. However, even if the Sharks decide not to rebuild, that money can help them afford players contributing to their success, especially considering Tomas Hertl’s contract ends this season.
As for Kane, whether or not he gets another chance at the NHL level is up for debate. The morality of signing him will determine whether or not a club is willing to take the risk. Kane has shown that he has been resistant to following NHL rules, which is an undesirable quality in the locker room. It will be interesting to see if Kane finds a home in the NHL as a free agent.
Evander Kane and the NHLPA have decided to file a grievance. This story will continue to develop as the result of the NHLPA’s decision unfolds.