How Healthy does Patrick Kane Look on the Ice?
When the New York Rangers chose to trade for Vladimir Tarasenko over Patrick Kane the hockey world was mildly shocked. Why wouldn't they want Kane? Later that day many reports came in that they were worried about Patrick Kanes' overall health.
While this was a decision by just one team, it certainly upset Patrick Kane whom when asked was clearly upset that option was now off the table for him. So which is true? Is he too injuried to help a contending team right now or is it just the same nagging injury that he has always had (at least for a few years)?
The truth likely is somewhere in the middle as always, but I asked my readers what they thought from just an eye test on what they see on the ice:
Has he played like he always does (100%), is he still a great player (75%), is he half as effective (50%), or is he so injured he shouldn't be playing (25%)?
The main response was that Kane is still a great player and likely playing at 75% (54% of voters) and 26% of you said he is just half effective. That's 80% of readers that say he is somewhere between 50-75% of his usual play.
I tend to believe his play is a mix of 3 things: a terrible roster around him, his natural regression due to age, and the rumored hip injury. For me that means that Kane is somewhere around 70-80% of how he normally plays (above a PPG player) and thusly affects his stats.
You can tell he is a 1/2 step (or skate) too slow on his burst and I also see a little slower stopping power when he pulls up and waits for trailers. Is this natural or more to do with an injury? Time will tell how he finishes the season (and with whom), but as of right now it's clear: Patrick Kane is not 100%.