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SIGNED: Evander Kane Signs With Oilers For Remainder Of Season

Oilers pick up talented winger with turbulent past

NHL: Arizona Coyotes at San Jose Sharks Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Evander Kane has signed with the Edmonton Oilers.

The NHL ruled earlier today that there will be no additional sanctions taken against Evander Kane after he crossed the Canadian border while testing positive for Covid-19 in late December. Once it became apparent that the NHL would not issue any further action in the matter, Kane’s deal became official.

The deal is for the remainder of this season. It’s valued at 2.1MM on the cap, but the actual cash will be prorated. The Oilers were able to fit Kane under the cap due to Mike Smith being placed on LTIR. Smith is eligible to come off LTIR in mid-February; the Oilers will have to make room if and when he does.

If we can put aside Evander Kane’s off-ice distractions for a moment, there’s plenty to like about the player’s ability. Kane is a physical forward with a knack for finding the back of the net. A former 30-goal scorer in 2018-19, Kane’s ability with the puck is impossible to ignore. He’s a top six winger that should begin to contribute almost immediately if everything clicks with his new line mates.

Unfortunately for Kane, it’s become impossible to separate the player from the off-ice conduct. There’s been several documented instances of strange and sometimes dangerous behaviours over the course of his career, creating giant distractions for himself. and those around him. He was released by San Jose midway through his seven year, 49 million dollar contract due to him willfully violating league Covid-19 protocols while a member of the club’s AHL affiliate. Prior to this incident, he was suspended for 21 games for producing a fake vaccine card.

It’s an extremely risky signing for the Oilers, and there could be some fallout from the fanbase. Kane is an extremely talented player, but it’s very possible that some fans will be unable to hold their noses. As far as the on-ice product, there’s no doubt that he can produce at a high level.

His contract contains a full NMC, and could be on the ice in game action as soon as this weekend.