Is Patrick Kane Still Possible With Current Salary Cap Situation?

Alexender Camilo
November 5, 2023  (7:32 PM)

The Rangers have been linked to the name of Patrick Kane, prior to the start of the season.

There are two camps, those who strongly want him on the team.
Also those who strongly don't.
Kane underwent successful hip resurfacing surgery after the Rangers first round loss against the New Jersey Devils last season.
Recovery took 4–6 months, and he has been ready to go for a few weeks now. It was reported he was fielding a number of teams come November, which has only amped up the discussions on where he will sign.
Now the question that is on everyone's mind after the long term injury reserve(LTIR) placement of Adam Fox, can the Rangers acquire him?
When the Rangers placed Fox on LTIR, they have access to $9.5 million of cap space, which is why they could comfortably fit the recalled players, Brodzinski, Mackey and Domingue onto the team.
However, if they go above the cap hit the $9.5 million grants them, they will no longer accrue cap space. Some think that relief cap space gives the Rangers access to acquire a big free agent to sign now. While that might be the case, it isn't as simple as it sounds.
The Rangers lose that $9.5 million cap space the moment Fox returns to the team, and whatever amount they have above the cap hit, they will need to offload. Which means if they signed Kane, they will need to offload the cap to place themselves underneath the cap hit which currently stands at $82,824,916.
The only way the Rangers keep that entire relief amount, is if Adam Fox stays on LTIR for the entire season.
However, if the Rangers are serious about winning a championship, and it's highly unlikely Fox's injury is that severe, I doubt they would want to sit a player out for a whole year, when they currently have championship aspirations.
If you exclude the $9.5 million of relief the Rangers have, they currently have $762,500 of actual space to use to sign a player. By the deadline cap, that space is projected to accrue to $3 million, provided they stay under a 22 man roster.
Now, we ask the question again. Can the Rangers sign Patrick Kane? Anything is possible, I still lean towards no. Kane's last average yearly salary was $10.5 million.
It's doubtful he will earn that same amount, when you factor in his age, health, and he is just not the same player he was 2-3 years ago. He will need to accept less. But how much less is he willing to go, is the question?
We know he wants to join a contender, something that has been publicly expressed by his agent, Pat Brisson. He wants to win another cup before he retires.
If he is willing to accept something closer to the vet minimum, the Rangers could sign him. The Rangers can also sign him if they manufacture some moves, like say, facilitate a trade for Barclay Goodrow and somehow offshore that $3.6 million contact.
Overall, I've come to the idea Kane would be a valuable player for the Rangers. He's still skillful, and a goal scoring threat. He can fit nicely on the first or second line.
Especially lately with the lackluster and underwhelming play of Kaapo Kakko. It'll help tremendously that he will have more than 19 games under his belt to build chemistry with whichever line he fits in.
My only concerns really is his health, and what the team would need to do to acquire him. If they can get him without blowing up the team or thinning the lines, it's worth it.
Regardless, the Rangers at full strength, even without Kane, are still championship contenders.
I feel this whole fiasco will be coming to an end within a week or two.
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