How deep is the Evander Kane issue


Andrew Forsyth, Sports Writer

Former Buffalo Sabre Evander Kane was suspended for 21 games for forging his vaccination card in what the NHL called an “Established violation” of the NHL/NHLPA Covid-19 protocol.

It may seem that the suspension is the worst thing for Evander Kane, but you would probably be wrong.
Evander Kane had quite the eventful offseason, but not in a good way. Apparent abuse charges by his wife, negligence of his child, allegedly gambling on games he was playing in. And on top of all of that, he claimed bankruptcy after an apparent gambling issue caught up to him.

This whole saga starts in January of 2021. Evander Kane filed for bankruptcy in early January of this year. On the filing, Kane listed liabilities at $26.8 million with assets of $10.2 million. While The Athletic notes that the sources of Kane’s losses are not clear, the petition indicates that he has lost $1.5 million in gambling over the last year. It is worth it to note that Evander Kane settled a lawsuit with The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas over unpaid gambling bills last year.

Kane listed seven dependents in his home including his 6-month-old daughter, 27-year-old sister, mom, dad, 2 of his uncles, and his grandmother.

Now onto the allegations by his wife Anna Kane. These if they turn out to be true are some pretty hefty allegations and could result in even more trouble with not only the NHL but law enforcement.

She filed divorce papers with Evander in July after she suspected he’d been cheating on her with his ex-girlfriend Mara Teigen. She claims he told her to pack up and leave their home.

Evander responded recently to her divorce and pleaded with the judge to order his ex to stay away from him. He filed a petition in which he accused Anna of abusing him on multiple occasions. He described her punching him in his face, pushing him and putting their daughter in danger, and smacking him around with her hands.

Anna then took to social media and claimed that Kane left her with no money to pay for their child’s expenses. Instead, he was in Europe partying it up while she was with the child. She also accused him of betting on his games which is HIGHLY illegal as you affect the result.

These allegations led the NHL to launch an investigation into the situation. Originally the Sharks were working with Kane to come to a solution that would benefit both him and the team. Although as more and more allegations came out the San Jose Sharks figured it was best to look forward into the season and let Kane figure out his issues.

This now brings us to the 21 game suspension. First, for some context, Kane hadn’t participated in training camp and didn’t participate in a single game for the team up to that point. So the 21 game suspension while yes it was shocking, the impact isn’t as much as you would think. Kane likely wouldn’t have played this season regardless and if he did it would not be in a Sharks uniform. The act of forging a vaccine card is strictly prohibited. Now the NHL doesn’t mandate the vaccine but restrictions on vaccinated players are far fewer than those who are not, so it would make sense for Kane to have been vaccinated. Except he wasn’t and he lied.

“I would like to apologize to my teammates, the San Jose Sharks organization, and all Sharks fans for violating the NHL COVID protocols,” said Kane in a statement released by the NHLPA. “I made a mistake, one I sincerely regret and take responsibility for. During my suspension, I will continue to participate in counseling to help me make better decisions in the future. When my suspension is over, I plan to return to the ice with great effort, determination, and love for the game of hockey.”

The thing is he betrayed the trust of teammates if these allegations are true and no player is going to be able to look at him the same. How can he come to a team and then have players fully believe he won’t do it again? For all, they know he hasn’t changed at all. Although it is impossible to tell. Kane is eligible to come back and play on November 30th against the New Jersey Devils, whether he will is unseen so far.

Evander Kane is no stranger to controversy but it has always been held to the realm of sport and hockey. An illegal hit or dirty play was the furthest he went.

Although this summer was very different.

It begs the question of how long he has been doing it if it is true. Also, have any other players done it?

Right now the NHL is swirling in controversy between this and the Chicago Blackhawks Scandal. How will they handle Evander Kane? Should he be able to play again?

I think not, at least not for the Sharks. He should be suspended indefinitely and require a reinstatement investigation once everything is resolved.

His future is very uncertain but we will have to keep an eye on that November 30th lineup to see if his name shows up.