New List Names 5 Potential Trade Partners for Patrick Kane, And At Least a Couple Do Make a Lot of Sense

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New List Names 5 Potential Trade Partners for Patrick Kane, And At Least a Couple Do Make a Lot of Sense

Chicago Blackhawks

Earlier this week, Frank Seravalli joined Ken Reid on his podcast to discuss the trade futures for the two big-ticket names on the Chicago Blackhawks. Sportsnet’s Ryan Dixon then offered up five potential destinations for Patrick Kane before the trade deadline. Most of them we’ve heard before, but one stood out as a highly unlikely new name.

The five teams Dixon lists are the New York Rangers, Boston Bruins, Pittsburgh Penguins, Carolina Hurricanes, and New York Islanders.

The organization has been pretty consistent all year in saying this is completely up to Kane and Jonathan Toews; at the start of the regular season, despite rumors to the contrary, general manager Kyle Davidson said he hadn’t spoken with anyone about the two stars.

It’s been reported a couple times in a couple places now, most recently by Pierre LeBrun, that the agent of both Kane and Jonathan Toews, Pat Brisson, will have a conversation with the players and the Blackhawks’ front office at some point in January about the future of the two future Hall of Famers.

Now that we’re getting to the end of the calendar year, it’s becoming more immediate and real that one or both of these icons could be moved at some point in the not-too-distant future. And we’re going to see more of these lists and hypotheticals come out in the days and weeks ahead.

But, for now, a few thoughts on the five teams Dixon listed.

I’ve already written about the fit with the New York Rangers a few times, most recently yesterday when Alexis Lafrenière was a healthy scratch for the Blue Shirts. They appear to check all the boxes necessary for a potential Kane trade: they have a decent amount of cap space, lots of draft picks to work with, young players who are intriguing, Artemi Panarin to skate with 88 when he gets there, and Madison Square Garden.

I’ve been trying to tell people for more than a year that the New York Islanders are a sleeper in this entire conversation. Lou Lamoriello has wanted Kane since he was in New Jersey, and might be ready to make the bold move to add a superstar to his offense. Kane loves Matt Barzal, so there’s a player there he would like to skate with. And they have a veteran lineup that has been to two conference finals series in recent seasons. If they want to go for it, they will need to add.

I’ve also written about the Boston Bruins, who have been scouting the Blackhawks heavily the entire season. A couple weeks ago there was a report that the Bruins were at least exploring the idea of Kane and/or Toews, though the return of David Krejci made Kane the more likely target (per the report). Their biggest issues are the cap space needed to add either Blackhawks’ star and disrupting their room. They already screwed up royally once this year when they signed Mitchell Miller and had a full-on revolt from the veterans on their NHL roster. Adding Kane isn’t going to be a mistake, but their chemistry is as good as any in the league right now and they don’t necessarily need to add.

The Carolina Hurricanes are an intriguing fit. They’re going to add Max Pacioretty to their lineup at some point in the near future, which will help their offense. The Canes are a really good team (which we saw the other night first-hand) and, as Dixon points out, might prefer to hunt for a center (Toews? Bo Horvat? Max Domi again?) instead of a wing. But if they want to go for it, they need to be better than a bottom-third of the league 5-on-5 offense (which they are right now).

The wild card in this conversation is the Pittsburgh Penguins, who haven’t been mentioned much/at all in Kane trade rumors. As Dan Kingerski at Pittsburgh Hockey Now put it, “OK, let me preface this one by pointing out the near impossibility, almost to a certainty.” Why? The Pens have limited cap space and are old. And, at some point they need to start thinking about their future. Indeed, the first thing Dixon writes about the Penguins making a deal for Kane backs up the assertion of Kingerski: “The Penguins have only made three first-round selections since 2013; why stop trading them now?” Why stop now? (Checks the ages of Crosby, Malkin and Letang…)

Author: Tab Bamford

Tab is the Lead Blackhawks voice for BN. He is the author of two books about the Blackhawks, most recently "Chicago Blackhawks: An Illustrated Timeline" (Reedy Press, 2021). Find him on Twitter at @The1Tab