Buffalo Sabres: Is Evander Kane a Victim of his Own Reputation?

Dec 28, 2015; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Evander Kane (9) watches from the bench during the first period against the Washington Capitals at First Niagara Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 28, 2015; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Evander Kane (9) watches from the bench during the first period against the Washington Capitals at First Niagara Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports /

Are Evander Kane’s latest off-ice issues much ado about nothing, or further evidence that the Buffalo Sabres winger is incapable of staying out of trouble?

The Buffalo Sabres and their fans must be thrilled that hockey’s version of Johnny Manziel waited until the NHL arrived in town for the draft, to make his mark. Seriously, Evander Kane could have picked any night to get into more trouble, but of course he had to wait until one of the biggest sporting events on the calendar was hosted in Western New York.

This leads to the question of if Kane has become a victim of his own reputation, or is really just that stupid? The answer is arguably a combination of the two, but let’s be fair to the guy and consider the information that is currently available.

The Vancouver, BC native’s latest brush with the law was initially reported by Nalina Shapiro of WIVB. Shapiro confirmed that two crime reports had been filed against the player.

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The crime reports related to an incident which apparently took place Thursday night on Chippewa Street, in a bar called Bottom’s Up. General manager David Robida advised that a group of people were escorted from the bar, after an incident between a friend of Kane’s and another individual.

Robida went on to stress the Sabres winger was not involved in the altercation. This is important to note, given further information which has now come to light.

As per the Canadian Press – via TSN – a person familiar with the situation said Buffalo police are investigating an allegation that Kane physically harassed two women in the bar. This information was relayed on the condition of anonymity, because police have not yet revealed any details of their investigation.

The person advised the 24-year old allegedly grabbed one of the women by the arm or shoulder. However, it was added that no charges have been filed and no one has been arrested at this stage.

Police spokesperson Mike DeGeorge spoke to WIVB on Friday and said: “Buffalo Police are in the preliminary stages of investigating the allegations”. The Sabres have understandably declined to comment at this time.

Buffalo Sabres
Feb 9, 2016; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Evander Kane (9) fights Florida Panthers defenseman Alex Petrovic (6) for the third time in the game during the third period at First Niagara Center. The Panthers won 7-4. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports /

Now that we have all the available information to hand, it is clear that – objectively speaking – we are still not in any position to know for sure what happened. As such, it would be unfair to make any accusations against Kane or the women in respect of this specific incident.

Of course, there will be some people who say Kane should know better than to put himself in these situations. This is especially true, so soon after being investigated for having committed a sexual offense at a local downtown hotel. (No charges were ever filed, as there was no evidence.)

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On the flip side, you could argue the 2009 fourth overall draft pick should be allowed to go out and enjoy himself. He’s only young and entitled to have a social life, just like the rest of us.

Here’s the thing though – most professional players do go out and socialize, without incident. Unfortunately, when the same individual continually puts themself in compromising situations, you have to question how sound their judgement is.

There is every possibility Kane is just a victim of his own reputation, and has done nothing wrong on this occasion. The problem is, it follows a pattern of previous behavior.

Make no mistake about it, the former Winnipeg Jets’ player has done a lot of good in the local community, since being traded to Buffalo last February. However, if he doesn’t stop putting himself in harms way, he doesn’t have much of a future in Western New York, no matter how talented he is.

Next: Why did the Sabres draft Alexander Nylander?

What do you make of the latest off-ice issues surrounding Evander Kane? Much ado about nothing, or further proof that he’s more trouble than he’s worth for the Sabres? Let us know in the comments section below.