As many know--I have been one of Kane's harshest critics--but often in the NHl certain players have for them--sub-par years...even beforethis year I asked if Kane had already plateaued at about a point a game leveland could not elevate to real elite status of the 100 point orabove level (as everyone predicted he would eventually do once he "matured" both in behaviour and in getting strongeras he aged into his mid 20's -BUT INSTEAD -this year he regressed off his even "normal
expectation of a point a game...So now I ask is the regression just a bad year one-off,or is this now his level --can't get 30 goals a year,can't score go to gols in playoffs--then WTF @ $6.3 million per? (though it seems with cap inflation that might be the"comparable" for a mere 23 goalscoreer/66pts guy =about a $million for every 6.6 pts? That makes giroux at 93 pts (in 77GP=1.207PPG ) not even mentioning his ELEVATION in the playoffs to 14pts in 6GP =2.33ppg incl 6 GOALS---vs. Kane's 4pts in 6GP in playoffs REGRESSION even from his baf .80PPG inthe reg season to just .666 ppg (speak of the devil!) ---THEN I guess Giroux is worth
1.4 times MORE than KANE (just on reg.season production) and MORE than that based on playoff "difference-making elevation"---so at least worth $8.82 million on the Kane comparables pay scale...Of course we could not pay that much under the cap -so I guess we are lucky with a "cheap" Kane for just his paltry production level..
AGain I ask though-despite my harsh criticism of what we are getting FOR THE MONEY IN"PRODUCTION" from him --if this is just a bad year-and next yearhe will be back to "normal" = 82 -88 pts as we expect at least THAT level for the money we paid (even though he's only cracked 80 pts once (88 in 2009/10) ...
THEREFORE despite my reservations on Kane's ultimate "VALUE" overall -despite my harsh criticisms of his flaws-I am willing to give him ONE MORE CHANCE at a "COMEBACK" year next season--I expect the PPG or slightly better level of production---he willnever "elevate" to Giroux-like 1.2 level of Giroux elevation in playoffs to 2.33 ppg to be the difference-maker in a series like that..never score goals at a giroux-like level--BUT if he "just" gives us PPG or slightly better( 82-88 pts) amd maintains that in playoffs THEN we can still argue whether that is worth $6.3 million a year -which it probably willb e league-wide on "compartables"---I don't think this is "great" vluee --but at least it willbe better than what we got out of him THIS YEAR....SO I am prepared to give him 1 more chance to get back tothis Minimum level of performance to ecpectation per $$$ spent...IF he has playeaued wellbelow this ppg level to merely 80% of it for a 2nd year in a row--THEN the call to trade him willbe loud and clear...SO I will give him another chance--to "rebound" with a better year next season ---OR ELSE!
Kane is clearly not the issue with our team. He has improved dramatically defensively over the course of his career and chances are he will continue to do so. While he had a down offensive year he did pretty darn well considering our power play was terrible. While he is terrible at face-offs it is hard to imagine that he will not work at them IF the Hawks tell him that their plan is to have him play center going forward. If you can all remember how hard he worked last summer before he was injured and I think he will do the same this summer. Is he a perfect player? No but he is only 23 and he is pretty damn good.
Going forward I think the Hawks need to sign a sniper type winger to play with Hossa and Kane. Ideally I would like them to focus on and sign A. Semin during free agency. If we were able to Semin it would improve our power play as well because Semin could replace Sharp. My ideal top two lines going into next year would be: Semin - Kane - Hossa & Saad - Toews - Sharp. I think the Toews like would excel because the all are people who can play both a grind game and a finesse game. I have always thought that Kane and Toews are better served apart because of how they play but that is just my opinion.
I wonder if Toews was the one with the bad year if you guys would want to trade him too. Kane will pick it up next year as long as the coaching staff doesn't keep moving him around. Also get someone other than Brunette on his line.
As I said--I give him another chance next season to have a "rebound year" --BUT IF he does not--THEN we must cosider his plateau and regreesion as a problem...
KANE next year CANNOT: take from mid NOV to March 1st "off" like he did this year --too many disinterested games ..too many no point or just 1 assist and out games--he must also SHOOT better (9.1 shooting % for a $6.3 million guy is awful)...he should hire Mike Bossy to teach him how to shoot...
AS to why our PP fails--well if one of the key guys only shoots 9.1% --WHAT DO YOU EXPECT?