Evander Kane will not sit on the bench between shifts, says insider

Liam McCormick
June 10, 2024  (11:00)

Evander Kane with the Edmonton Oilers
Photo credit: The Hockey News

Evander Kane has been a warrior playing through multiple injuries this playoffs, but now it's so bad that he can't even sit down between shifts.

No Kane at practice, which is normal. One thing, source tells me Kane never (or very seldom) sat on the bench in Game 1.
Whatever his injury, sitting doesn't work for him.
- Mark Spector

Mark Spector revealed today that between shifts in game one, Kane's injuries have been so bad that he needs to keep standing and walking in the tunnel, likely to avoid pain. At the beginning of the playoffs, Kane revealed that he's been playing through a sports hernia injury, and then he sustained another unspecified injury after laying a hit in the series against the Dallas Stars.
With potentially multiple injuries affecting him, it's absolutely incredible that Kane is even pushing to be in the lineup. He wasn't at practice today, which was normal, but the usual placeholder on the second line wasn't there today. Instead, it looks like Adam Henrique will be promoted to Draisaitl's line, and Kane will be moved down to the third line. After practice, Kane confirmed he will be playing tonight.
The Oilers will also make one other lineup decision of consequence, scratching Cody Ceci for the first time as an Oiler and inserting Vincent Desharnais into the lineup.

Evander Kane can still help the Oilers while seriously restricted by injuries

With only one point in his last 8 games and only 8 points through 19 playoff games, Evander Kane clearly isn't playing his best hockey while being bogged down with injuries. Still, he can be an effective player without scoring, as he's still playing physical and getting under the skin of the opponent. In game one, he gave Tkachuk a cheap shot to the face in front of a referee, and just got away with it. Surely, that battle will continue tonight.
Even without his scoring touch, Kane needs to bring his physical game and his chirps to make a real contribution to the team. Legitimately, if he can tick off the Panthers enough to draw a penalty or two and give the Oilers elite powerplay a chance, it's worth it.
Tonight at 8:00, the Oilers will take on the Panthers again at Amerant Bank Arena, looking to tie the series up while heading back to Edmonton - where the home ice advantage and atmosphere with the fans will be a huge boost to the Oilers. One win on the road is important, but you don't lose a series until you lose at home.
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Evander Kane will not sit on the bench between shifts, says insider

Do you think Kane should've gotten surgery earlier this year to be healthy for the playoffs?

Yes, Oilers should've prioritized playoff health27879.4 %
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