Hockey Teams Are Looking To Trade With Blackhawks For Patrick Kane
By Kate Shepherd in News on Sep 3, 2015 8:38PM
Patrick Kane speaking during the Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup Championship Rally in June. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
With the Chicago Blackhawks set to start training camp on Sept. 17, questions about Patrick Kane's fate are getting louder and trade rumors are swirling amid interest from other teams.
Kane remains under investigation by Hamburg, New York police for an alleged sexual assault but has not been charged with a crime—which is not unusual for sexual assault cases.
His reputation as one of the NHL's best players remains intact. At least five teams have contacted the Blackhawks to ask about his trade availability since the allegations came to light, the Sun-Times reported.
The Hawks are facing an impossibly hard decision. Trading Kane might be the best and only solution, according to the Sun-Times' Mark Lazerus. The Blackhawks are one of the most image-conscious teams in professional sports and Kane has been on thin ice with the team for his bad boy behavior for years. His last strike was supposed to be his 2012 Cinco de Mayo escapades in Madison, Wis. and the rape allegations might be one step too far.
Team president John McDonough was "volcanically outraged" when the reports surfaced, the Sun-Times reported. Team owner Rocky Wirtz told reporters that he was "disappointed but hopeful."
That Kane told a crowd during the 2015 Stanley Cup parade last June: "I know you said I've been growing up, but watch out for me the next week," does not help his case.
One hurdle is Kane's massive $84 million, eight-year contract, which would be a hard sell on the trade market. For the Hawks, it would free up a huge amount of salary cap room for signing strong players and save their carefully-crafted reputation.
The team has not given any official indications that they are interested in trading Kane. Despite the trade rumors, the team has not asked Kane whether he would waive his contract's no-move clause, according to ESPN.
It's still unlikely that Kane will return to the team until the District Attorney makes a decision on charges, according to CBS Sports.
"If Kane remains under investigation when camps start, there's not a lot of good that can come from the league allowing the forward to participate," CBS Sports' Chris Peters wrote. "Kane may be innocent until proven guilty, but the league also has measures that take players in Kane's situation out of the equation until something more concrete is decided."
So until we get an official decision from the team, any scenario is possible.