Patrick Kane is headed to the Motor City on a 1 year, $2.75M deal the club announced on Tuesday. Because his contract is prorated for the remainder of the 2023-24 campaign, he will earn just over $2M in real money.
Detroit came away as the big winners in the Kane sweepstakes, getting him signed to a low risk, 1 year “prove it” deal that will give them financial flexibility to add at the trade deadline as well. On Kane’s side, he’ll be reunited with former Chicago Blackhawks teammate Alex DeBrincat, as he hopes that a strong 2nd half showing with the Red Wings will allow him to reestablish his value on the open market next offseason.
The last time the dynamic wingers played together was during the 2021-22 campaign in Chicago which saw Kane post 92 points (26G, 66A) in 78 games, while DeBrincat registered a career high 78 points (41G, 37A).
The 35 year old winger underwent hip resurfacing surgery on June 1st after the New York Rangers were eliminated from the playoffs. Widely regarded as the top name available in a weaker free agent class this offseason, teams had to wait until he was fully recovered before making their pitches as Kane and his agent Pat Brisson wanted to see how the first part of the season played out.
Detroit currently sits 3rd in the Atlantic Division with an 11-6-3 record through the first quarter of the year. Their +14 goals differential is good for 3rd in the Eastern Conference at the moment, while their 3.7 goals per game ranks first. Adding a player of Kane’s pedigree will make the Wings that much more dangerous, especially given his pre-established chemistry with DeBrincat.
With a Hart Trophy, 3 Stanley Cup rings, and a Conn Sythe trophy already on his resume, Kane is a first ballot hall of famer when his career ultimately winds up. But that doesn’t mean he’s content to ride out the final few years of his NHL career. Both Kane and Brisson have made it known that he still wants to compete for another Stanley Cup, and evidently believe that Detroit gives them the best opportunity to do so.
For his part, Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman is clearly banking on the Buffalo, NY native’s extensive playoff resume being a key factor in helping end Detroit’s 7 year playoff drought. The Wings are next in action Wednesday night at 7:30pm ET vs. the red hot New York Rangers, and then play host to the Blackhawks on Thursday. It’s currently unclear when Detroit plans to activate Kane, but for the time being have recalled right winger Jonatan Berggren from their AHL affiliate in Grand Rapids.
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