From injury, to trade rumors, to a lack of production, to his coach calling him out for undisciplined play, this has been a turbulent start to the season on the ice for Evander Kane.
The Buffalo Sabres forward has one assist in seven games after returning to the lineup from his earlier rib injury — and offseason off-ice issues as well.
Speculation about a possible trade involving the Vancouver Canucks has swirled for weeks, especially with the Canucks in the market for a scoring forward, although it appears that idea has dried up in recent days.
But with all the trade talk, Kane has tried to set the record straight about how he feels playing for the Sabres — in just his second year with the franchise.
“I like to think I’m pretty well informed, but at the same time you never know what can happen. I don’t worry about it. I’m very, very, very happy with where I’m at here in Buffalo. And maybe I couldn’t have said that in the past in my career,” Kane told the Buffalo News.
The Sabres ended a six-game losing streak by stunning the Pittsburgh Penguins of all teams in a shootout on Saturday. After recording his first point of the season last Thursday, Kane went out against the Penguins and had two shots on goal in 21:30 of ice time.
The Sabres play the Calgary Flames on Monday. It’s a chance for Buffalo to win two in a row, which has happened only once so far this season.
It wasn’t a triple deke, glove side.
But Aleksander Barkov‘s shootout winner against the New York Rangers was the epitome of fancy, as he helped the Florida Panthers complete the comeback Sunday.
Barkov played the puck off his skate, then pulled a one-handed deke against a helpless Henrik Lundqvist for the goal. How do you like that, Peter Forsberg?
The puck just barely crossed the goal line. Lundqvist made an attempt to dive back and swipe the puck off the goal line, but he was a split second too late.
Meanwhile, the Rangers not only suffered the loss, but forward Mika Zibanejad suffered a broken fibula after crashing feet-first into the boards during overtime. He’s expected to miss six to eight weeks.
The New York Rangers lost in the shootout to the Florida Panthers on Sunday, but the news was much worse for Alain Vigneault’s group.
Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad went crashing into the end boards, feet first, during overtime and was unable to put pressure on his left leg as he was helped off the ice by his teammates.
Vigneault announced after the game that Zibanejad suffered a broken fibula and is expected to be out six to eight weeks.
The Panthers came back to win 3-2 in the shootout. Keith Yandle, the former Rangers defenseman, scored his first goal as a member of the Panthers.
But for the Rangers, the loss of Zibanejad from that high-scoring lineup is significant. He scored in Sunday’s game, to go with four shots on goal, and has five goals and 15 points in 19 games for New York.
“Every team has got injuries and we don’t expect to be any different,” Vigneault told reporters. “Like every coach says in these moments: It’s an opportunity for somebody else to get more ice time and … I’m confident whoever we decide to put in that spot will be able to do the job for us.”
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Victor Rask got his eighth goal of the season and 19-year-old Noah Hanifin scored his first, helping the Carolina Hurricanes beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-1 on Sunday night for their fourth straight win.
Elias Lindholm also got his first goal this season in the first period, and the Hurricanes kept up the pressure from there, challenging goalie Connor Hellebuyck with 40 shots.
Rask made it 2-0 on a power play early in the third, and after Mark Scheifele got his 11th goal for the Jets, Hanifin put it away with a power-play score with 1:43 left.
Cam Ward had 28 saves for Carolina, which finished 4-1-0 on this homestand.
Lindholm got on the board 6:45 in. He swept in from the left side along the goal line and ripped a shot past Hellebuyck on the short side. The goalie was screened by defenseman Dustin Byfuglien and couldn’t find the puck.
Rask made it 2-0 2:39 into the third, taking a slick pass from Lee Stempniak in close and lifting it past Hellebuyck.
Scheifele took over the NHL points lead (23) when he narrowed the deficit to 2-1. The 23-year-old one-timed a pass from Nikolaj Ehlers after Ehlers raced after a loose puck in the corner.
Hanifin restored the two-goal lead with a hammered one-timer from the right point.
The teams also played to open the season, when Winnipeg rallied from two goals down to win 4-3 in overtime.
Ward stalled the effort for a similar rally Sunday. He helped kill off a hooking penalty on Viktor Stalberg with about six minutes left by stopping three shots.
Carolina was perfect on the penalty kill for the ninth straight game. It killed three penalties Sunday and leads the NHL with a 91.1 percent success rate, including 19 straight.
It took 19 games, but Keith Yandle finally has his first goal as a member of the Florida Panthers.
The veteran puck-moving defenseman had nine assists in 18 games prior to Sunday’s contest against his old team, the New York Rangers. His goal, from a point shot that beat Henrik Lundqvist, put the Panthers back into a tie game late in the second period.
Yandle was one of the key offseason acquisitions this summer, and he entered this season with plenty of pressure after he signed a seven-year contract in Florida.
Yandle played 103 games for the Rangers, recording 58 points.