The floundering Sabres are expected to move Evander Kane before the Feb. 26 NHL trade deadline. The 26-year-old left wing is due to become an unrestricted free agent in July and could seek a significant raise over his current $5.25 million annual average salary. He might not fit into the Sabres' long-term plans. The asking price, however, is steep. Last week, TSN's Pierre LeBrun reported Sabres general manager Jason Botterill sought a first-round draft pick, a prospect and a conditional pick. On Tuesday, his colleague Darren Dreger followed that up in saying there are teams claiming Botterill also wants an NHL roster player included in that package. Botterill can't be blamed for pursuing a big return for his best trade chip. His club is stuck in the Eastern Conference basement and he faces a busy offseason attempting to improve his roster. Getting a good return for Kane could prove a crucial step in his rebuilding efforts. With Kane on pace for a 30-goal, 65-point season, he will be an enticing trade target for postseason contenders seeking additional scoring punch. Suitors could include the Ducks, Blue Jackets, Penguins and Blues. It's doubtful, however, any of them will give up four pieces to acquire a rental player, even one as talented as Kane. At best, he should fetch the Sabres a first-round pick (likely in the bottom-third of the round) and either a young player, prospect or conditional pick.
Sabres' steep asking price for Evander Kane stirs debate over worth
Sporting News | Jan 18