May 14, 2012, 12:10 PM EDT
It took a little longer than we expected for Patrick Kane’s boozy Wisconsin adventures to make headlines in mainstream Chicago media outlets, but after Deadspin’s follow-up post that alleged more than your everyday partying, there are plenty now.
“Party boy Patrick Kane would be smart to tone down his public escapades” – Chicago Sun-Times
If you Googled “Patrick Kane’’ on Saturday, the first item that came up was “Patrick Kane’s drunken weekend.’’ That’s not something the image-conscious Blackhawks want when they’re trying to sell themselves to families. That’s not what you want 8-year-old Timmy seeing when he’s researching his favorite player for a school report.
Athletes are role models, whether they want to be or not. It comes with the money and the fame. Your every move is watched, analyzed and judged. Some of those moves are emulated, even the stumbling-drunk ones.
“Who might want Kane traded? Only everyone” – WGNRadio.com
There’s a rule in hockey that resounds from the dressing room out: Your best players have to be your leaders and your leaders have to be your best players. Kane is hardly a leader. There’s no reason to trust him.
And yet, he’s still here.
The silence from Hawks wonks tells me they think Kane is guilty. Their inertia tells me they don’t know what to do or how to trade him.
It’s obvious the Hawks can’t trust Kane, but if he’s not traded, how can fans trust the organization?
“Kane’s latest indiscretions harmful to his and Hawks’ image” – Chicago Tribune
The Hawks’ hierarchy is mum on Kane’s antics, also declining to be interviewed. But there can be little doubt President John McDonough — who is all about a positive image for the organization — is displeased.
The question begins to be raised, is Kane wearing out his welcome with the organization? When (if?) he does grow up or instead fritters away his remarkable talent in a haze of frat parties, will it be in a Hawks uniform?
Whether the Blackhawks take drastic measures, i.e. trade him, we’ll have to wait and see. We don’t even know if they think the pictures and allegations are a big deal. If we had to bet, we’d say they do, but they haven’t commented publicly yet. Suffice to say a player of Kane’s abilities has to really push the envelope (partying-wise) before he’s dealt away.
It has gotten to the point, however, that people (like us!) won’t be afraid to speculate about places he could be sent.
Kane has three years left on a contract with a $6.3 million cap hit, after which he’ll become an unrestricted free agent.
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