Just over 3 weeks ago on June 1st, it was announced that Patrick Kane underwent a successful hip resurfacing procedure. This was long rumored, though never confirmed what the ailment exactly was, but never confirmed. The New York Ranger (still strange to say) forward had just completed an up and down campaign with his new team and now was entering a long offseason.
This offseason is a different one for Kane though, now 34 years old, as he will enter true unrestricted free agency. Gone are the dynasty years, the contract stability (just finished an 8 year / 84 million deal), and the billboards for a city he played for his entire career until of late.
No, this will be a very different type of offseason for Patrick Kane and his family. The future Hall of Famer has a 4-6 month recovery window following the procedure. This timeframe could put him being game ready anytime from October to December depending on his regiment and how his body responds to the hip resurfacing.
With free agency on July 1st (1 week away) it will be up to teams and Patrick Kane on if they and he want to take a gamble on signing any sort of contract. How much is he worth, what should the term and money be, and when will he project to be healthy enough to contribute? All questions that won't have an answer at the present moment.
To me, as well as some of my readers like @Tysher37, the most likely sceanrio seems to be that Patrick Kane should wait until midseason to find a new team. This ensures quite a bit of stability for Kane in my opinion. One, it will show whom the true contenders are at that moment and where their needs and openings are. Two, it will show how much cap space that team has in terms of what they can pay Kane. Finally, a situation could present itself where an injury could lead to an LTIR designation where now that team can fit Patrick Kane.
There is of course his health as well. Patrick Kane will turn 35 just three weeks into next season and coming off of a procedure that by all accounts was long overdue. Patrick Kane, just like all he does, will attack his rehab and likely get back to playing shape faster than we all think. I, however think he should go about this at a slower pace to try and gain years beyond just the upcoming season. This could put him signing with a team into late Decemeber to early February.
Teams near the top of the standings that could have openings could be clubs such as the Avalanche, Bruins, Hurricanes, Lightning, Stars, or defending Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights. So where will he sign? When? For how long and how much? All those questions won't likely be answered for quite some time. Where do you think he'll land? Please post your comments in the feed below.