Remember how we all loved the Patrick Kane experiment and wanted him to stick around as a member of the New York Rangers? Arthur Staple of the Athletic predicts a Rangers reunion with the Buffalo native in November. This would help the Rangers for a couple of reasons and make it possible. If you’re confused because the Blueshrits are over the cap already with a 23-man roster, you’re not alone.
So, a couple of things would make this possible. Kane won’t be healthy for a few months yet since he is coming off hip surgery. He had needed the issue cleared up for years, and he finally bit the bullet and got it sorted this summer. Hip surgeries are awful for players because they weaken such an important part of the body for the athletes. It means players can miss more time after the operation, but Kane has a redeeming factor here.
Kane turns 35 on November 19. This is important because he will be eligible to sign a 35+ contract. This would make him eligible for performance bonuses instead of a set salary. So, if the Rangers signed him for a league minimum deal worth $775,000 for the season but set a bonus of $1 million for making the playoffs, he could make $1.775 million for the year. They could apply multiple bonuses so that the total gets larger.
Now, that’s not the best solution because of the Rangers’ current cap predicament. Bonuses carry over to the following season in the form of overages if a team cannot fit them in under the salary cap. Is it worth sacrificing cap space for next season to try and bring Kane in this year? I’m not so sure, but if Chris Drury and the Rangers management can make it work well enough to get the future Hall of Famer, it’ll make the roster better.
Kane scored five goals and seven assists for 12 points in 19 regular season games last week. Kane also had a goal and five assists for six points during the seven games the Rangers had in the postseason. He very much lived up to his side of the deal regarding production while needing to have his hip cleaned up. Now that it’s done, there should be more optimism around the 2007 1st overall pick.