To quote the great Doc Emrick if Patrick Kane indeed considers signing with the Detroit Red Wings: What chaos it would be for fans of the Winged Wheel and Chicago Blackhawks.
The Daily Herald’s John Dietz dropped quite a bomb in the middle of a long weekend that included some speculation on where former forward Patrick Kane could end up:
Watch for Patrick Kane to sign with the Detroit Red Wings. Someone who knows Kane very well said Kane told him he wanted to follow Alex DeBrincat if/when he was able. Of course there has to be mutual interest, so we'll see if Detroit extends an olive branch … https://t.co/4qk4lEASPM
— John Dietz (@JDietzSports) September 3, 2023
For those doubting Dietz, it was astutely pointed out that he broke the news about Rocky Wirtz’s passing. Besides his friendship with DeBrincat, there is also some history with Kane in the Detroit area that dates back to his days of youth hockey.
Kane Played Travel, Junior Hockey In Michigan, Canada
Kane played for the Honeybaked AAA program when he was 15, and was then drafted by the London Knights of the OHL in the fifth round of the CHL Entry Draft. He lived with then Red Wings forward Pat Verbeek, and spent time with the US Developmental program before playing a season with London.
It’s where he came to prominence, scoring 62 goals and notching 145 points with the Knights, prompting Chicago to take him first overall in the 2007 NHL Draft.
The familiarity is one thing, but Kane spoke glowingly of his time playing in Michigan when he was younger in the USA Hockey magazine back in 2015. Verbeek was a mentor and just happens to be the general manager of the Anaheim Ducks now. While they could also be an intriguing option, the Red Wings are a bit further down the road in terms of competitiveness as well as his friendship with DeBrincat being a catalyst.
Would the Red Wings, though, agree that Kane could be another asset?
A Kane Kerfuffle for Both Fanbases
Though the long standing Red Wings-Blackhawks rivalry has cooled thanks to being in different leagues, Kane signing with Detroit would certainly rile up many in the fanbase. Quickly perusing social media when Dietz sent out his tweet generated some strong reactions amongst many.
For Blackhawks fans, it would be a franchise icon choosing to sign with the hated rival, the organization who inspires the Detroit Sucks chant that outpaces a Lets Go Hawks one when prompted by the organ. Of all the teams to see him go to, only the St. Louis Blues ranks up there as one that would agitate Hawks fans.
For Red Wings fans, Kane was never well liked, seen as a “punk” by many Detroit fans. There was rejoicing when Johan Franzen snatched his mouthguard during Game 4 of the 2009 Western Conference Final, appreciating the dig at the then young forward.
I am begging for this to not be true https://t.co/RTTuvS7DS3
— Delaney Rimer (@delaneydrw) September 3, 2023
But if the signing would indeed come to pass, what a role reversal it would be. Red Wings fans cheering on a Kane goal. Would Hawks fans boo him on home ice when he touches the puck, as they did when Chris Chelios skated with Detroit?
It’s an interesting wrinkle in what has been a quiet few weeks. Much remains to be seen and Kane signing with a team that seems more assured of a deep playoff seemingly appears the likelier option.
But it will certainly be quite the story if Kane pulls the on another Original Six sweater in less than a year.