Love him or hate him, there’s no denying the impact that power forward Evander Kane had on the San Jose Sharks since joining the team in February from the Buffalo Sabres in a deadline day deal. In 17 regular season games with the Sharks, Kane put up a remarkable nine goals and 14 points, he followed that up with four goals and five points in nine post season games, as well. Not bad for a player acquired for a conditional 1st round pick and spare parts.
Kane finished his 2017-18 season with 29 goals and 54 points in 78 regular season games split between the Sabres and Sharks, making him one of the highest scoring players to hit the free-agent market this offseason. It’s expected that he’ll receive a slight raise from his current $6 million annual salary, but as much as $2 million or $3 million per season. The question now becomes… who does he sign with? Does he go to market? Or does he elect to re-up with the Sharks?
Sharks insider Kevin Kurz of The Athletic reports that Sharks general manager Doug Wilson intends on offering Kane a mid-to-long term deal, with the hopes of keeping him in a Sharks uniform:
From what I’m told, the Sharks are prepared to offer Evander Kane a mid-to-long term contract extension (no word yet on specifics). That doesn’t assure something will get done, but the team does appear to be committed to keeping Kane around for the future, if possible.
Interesting. So… what does this mean for New York Islanders superstar John Tavares? After all, the Sharks are rumored to be “all in” on Tavares, should he test free-agency, as well. If the Sharks pony up for Kane, they couldn’t possibly afford Tavares too, could they? Hold the phone…
Hey, Sharks fans how does a Kane, Tavares and Joe Pavelski top line sound to you? You have to also assume that Joe Thornton will need to take a steep discount in order to make everything work… but where there’s a will, there’s a way. A secondary scoring line with Thornton, Logan Couture and Tomas Hertl is as good as ANY second line in the NHL, also.
Interesting times in the Bay Area. Definitely worth keeping an eye on as we get closer and closer to offseason free-agency.