Report: Players Can Tell Patrick Kane is “Gutting It Out” and Not Fully Healthy
As you might suspect, the first post-All-Star Game edition of the “32 Thoughts” Podcast brought up the futures of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. Elliotte Friedman spoke about the duo, whose decision(s) are looming with less than four weeks before the NHL’s March 3 trade deadline.
Friedman said he wouldn’t handicap what Toews is going to do, but what he shared about Kane was concerning — whether you’re more worried about the return on the trade market than his play on the ice or his personal well-being.
Apparently, other players know Kane isn’t 100 percent. It’s obvious on the ice.
“I was talking to a couple guys who played against him recently down here at the all-star break and they can see he’s really gutting it out,” Friedman said. “He’s not 100 percent. A couple of them said they really gave him credit for trying to play thru it – whatever it is that’s bothering him… One player said to me you can really tell he’s not Patrick Kane. Although, again, he really praised him for the effort that he was making to do it because he knows the Blackhawks are probably counting on it.”
Admirable? Sure. But if Kane is playing on a flat tire — we’ve talked about his ongoing hip/knee issue — that complicates his immediate future, whether that’s in Chicago or elsewhere.
Back in early January, Friedman said on the podcast that “there has been a rumor that Pat Kane has been dealing with something, some kind of injury some sort of nagging injury, for some period of time. And at some point, he’s going to need a clean up…”
If other players see it, so do pro scouts and front offices. And his teammates and the Blackhawks’ coaches and front office know it, too.