Snapshots: Blackhawks, Kane, Wedin

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This is a quick turnaround in the COVID protocol for a few Chicago Blackhawks, well at least two of the three. After missing training yesterday due to respecting league protocol, Ryan charpentier and Erik Gustafsson were back on the ice in morning practice today ahead of their game against the Detroit Red Wings. However, staying away was star Patrick Kane, who was also part of the protocol group yesterday. Scott Powers of Athletic a confirmed suspicions, relaying the word from the Blackhawks that Carpeneter and Gustafsson have been taken off the COVID protocol, but Kane has not. It’s unclear why the trio were initially subdued or why Kane is staying, but regardless, Chicago will get reinforcements but could still miss their best player tonight. After a frustrating 0-4-1 start, the Blackhawks can hardly afford to be without Kane for very long. Interestingly, the head coach Jeremy Colliton stopped short to rule out Kane against Detroit, but there will have to be a change in his COVID status in a few hours.

  • Another team that lacks a Kane is the San Jose Sharks. Top scorer last season, Evander Kane, is serving a 21-game suspension for violating COVID protocol by using a fake vaccination card. Given all of the controversy surrounding Kane over the past year, a 21-game absence is unlikely what the Sharks expected from multiple inquiries. The great winger will indeed be eligible to return to the team before the end of November. So where does San José go from here? The team are having an incredible and unexpected 5-0-0 start and playing well, perhaps without Kane’s distraction in the locker room. However, they have little recourse to prevent him from returning to the club. TSN’s Chris Johnston reports that the Sharks cannot terminate Kane’s contract due to the long suspension or as a form of internal punishment due to the findings that led to his suspension from the league. The CBA does not allow any form of double punishment and the NHLPA would not let it go. They would be backed up by a recent report from Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, who said the league never viewed the dismissal as punishment for Kane. While the Sharks may be open to a reunion with Kane, Johnston and Friedman note that the team’s reaction has been a mixture of support and contempt for the situation and Kane’s coaches and teammates have been unwilling to know about it. ‘they wanted it or not. back. The team has a little over a month to decide how to handle their comeback.
  • Interestingly, a former Chicago Blackhawk and player once linked to the San Jose Sharks were back in the market this week, albeit briefly. Cheeky Anton Wedin, who spent the 2019-20 season in the Blackhawks organization, ended his contract with KHL’s Sibir Novosibirsk earlier this week. This sparked speculation that he might return to North America, even if it was only on a contract in the AHL. After all, Wedin made the jump from Sweden to Chicago at 26 and played four NHL games and scored 17 points in 31 AHL games. It was by no means a bad season. Wedin, who had only concluded a year with the Blackhawks, sparked some interest in the NHL for the 2020 offseason but ultimately decided to return home to Sweden during the pandemic, totaling 16 goals and 30 points in 39 games with HV71 in his best SHL season to date. Wedin’s name didn’t appear in any NHL rumors this summer and he signed in the KHL, but after just two points in 14 with Sibir he moved on. Instead of exploring a return abroad, Wedin will play the season in the KHL after signing with Dynamo Moscow for the remainder of the year. Still only 28 years old and with some experience and ability in the NHL, Wedin could possibly return to the league in the future.



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