Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: patrick kane
from Melissa Isaacson of ESPN,
Despite the fact that the Kane investigation continues, some have already filed it under the same category as notorious cases that unraveled under doubt and false allegations, like the Duke lacrosse case or the Rolling Stone cover story about the University of Virginia.
Social media is filled with accusations that alleged rape victims are liars and whores, that women making up stories about being assaulted is a virtual epidemic, that those defending or even reporting on such victims should be beaten or raped themselves.
The mess surrounding the Kane case only propagates this garbage. And makes it harder today than it was yesterday for victims of sexual abuse to be taken seriously....
Each case should be treated individually, a statement as obvious as it is probably naïve. The Kane saga has indeed been a circus -- a word Sedita used Friday -- from the beginning -- from the double standard with which Kane seemed to be treated, to the news conference in which he was propped up publicly by his team and told to say nothing, to this latest tampering hoax. To regard it as any sort of case study, let alone a precedent, would be ridiculous.
Sadly, it is just another disturbing story in a sea of them, another disappointing chapter in what falls under the vast and troubling umbrella of sports coverage these days.
from the Buffalo News,
At a news conference held in his office Friday morning, Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III addressed allegations of evidence tampering in the Patrick Kane rape investigation.
Sedita said the forensic evidence in the case was not compromised or tampered with, including the brown paper bag that was allegedly left at the home of the accuser’s mother.
“The rape kit was never in any kind of bag, Sedita said, “and it has never left the custody of ... the laboratory since.”...
edita said it was time to break his silence, stating that “the issue here is the integrity of the criminal justice system and the public’s confidence in the criminal justice system.”
“This office is not responsible for this circus,” he said.
When asked by a reporter when he thinks this case would go to the grand jury, Sedita responded: “The question in my mind is not when this case will go to a grand jury but if this case will go to a grand jury.”
added 1:07pm, via Sportsnet, watch below as the DA talks about the next step...
The Erie County District Attorney has scheduled a press conference for 11:00am ET today.
Watch it below via CSNChicago.
And things get even more complicated, per the Buffalo News:
Buffalo attorney Thomas Eoannou has dropped the Patrick Kane accuser as a client over “misrepresentations” of the evidence bag left at the accuser’s mother’s house.
“I don’t have confidence in the way the bag was found, Eoannou said at a promptly called news conference Thursday night.
One day earlier, a news conference was held by Eoannou to announce the rape kit evidence bag that had contained DNA evidence collected in the Kane investigation was anonymously delivered to the mother of the alleged victim. The mother of the alleged victim found the torn bag at her home, sandwiched between the storm door and the front door at about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Eoannou told The Buffalo News on Wednesday the development “calls into question the integrity of all the physical evidence in this case.”
Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III had told The News that Eoannou’s allegations about the evidence “will definitely be investigated.” He said he was surprised to hear that an evidence bag had been left at the home of the alleged victim’s mother and said he has never heard of such a thing in more than 27 years as a prosecutor.
“In 27-plus years, I’ve never seen a rape kit tampered with,” Sedita said. “It will be investigated, professionally investigated.”
added 6:46am 9/27/15, Below, watch the attorney speak on the latest twist to this case...
Folks, we’re all just going to have to be patient and let the legal process work, as frustrating as that may seem to those who believe a crime has been committed.
Nothing has changed. Hopefully, something will soon. A man stands accused, and a woman has made serious allegations she was sexually assaulted.
Both have rights. The system needs to work as quickly as possible. The public wants answers.
-Damien Cox of Sportsnet where you can read more on this case...
The next step is for the district attorney to review Eoannou’s complaint and determine where the truth lies. If the rape kit was indeed tampered with, the district attorney may be looking at a weaker case against Kane and may elect to alter its course of action. Thereafter, the district attorney will consider whether the case will still be sent to a grand jury, which decides whether Kane will be formally charged. Generally, the district attorney will send a case to a grand jury if he or she believes there is a reasonable chance of securing a conviction at trial. However, that does not always occur, as some high profile cases with inconclusive evidence may still be sent to the grand jury for deliberation. The idea in those circumstances is to let an impartial group of ordinary citizens test the evidence and have them make their own determination.
-Eric Macramalla of TSN who has more on the process...
from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,
So now the league is stuck in a situation in which it cannot win. If it continues to allow Kane to play and practice with the Blackhawks, it risks alienating those who think it is not reacting appropriately to a very serious allegation of sexual assault. And if it suspends Kane, it will be accused of having a knee-jerk reaction and taking action before all the facts are known.
So in the absence of any sanity at all in this situation, the league is allowing Kane to stay. And that’s as it should be.
Because when it comes down to it, the NHL had absolutely nothing to do with what transpired, one way or another, in Patrick Kane’s home the night of Aug. 2. It can’t do anything about the fact that Kane hired as his lawyer a man who would allow himself to be photographed and filmed with a mug commemorating Hustler’s 40th anniversary and something called “Money Soap” in the background. It has no control over the innuendo, allegations and now, skullduggery that have dominated the narrative of this event.
People can talk all they want about whose DNA was where, but what this case really comes down to is consent. Kane’s DNA could be present, but that doesn’t necessarily indicate rape.
from Jared S. Hopkins of the Chicago Tribune,
An attorney for the woman who has accused Blackhawks star Patrick Kane of sexual assault claimed the police evidence bag containing the accuser's rape kit showed up on her mother's doorstep, an explosive allegation that could taint the ongoing investigation.
Criminal Defense attorney Thomas J. Eoannou said the accuser's mother noticed the brown bag on her doorstep when she returned home from work around 1:30 p.m. Tuesday. At a news conference in Buffalo, he provided a photograph of the purported bag, which contained the accuser's name as well as the initials of the nurse who performed the evidence collection at the hospital in Erie County.
The Tribune could not immediately confirm its authenticity, and it was unclear if the attorney had confirmed it with the authorities.
Eoannou called for an independent investigation, while acknowledging it will hinder the prosecution's ability to move forward with the case.
"If you're looking for a sure-fire way to scuttle a prosecution, you tamper with evidence," Eoannou said.
added 1:50pm, Watch the opening remarks from the attorney below, via Sportsnet.
The attorney for the accuser in the Patrick Kane case, Thomas Eoannou, will address the media at a 1:00pm ET press conference.
Watch it below, via CSNChicago.
Sportsnet also has coverage.
Also, please understand I have no control of the feed, just hoping it comes through without any buffering.
added 1:17pm, Press conference is over.
via the Buffalo News,
The attorney who represents a woman who alleges that she was raped by hockey star Patrick Kane will hold his first news conference on the matter at 1 p.m. on Wednesday.
Thomas J. Eoannou has represented the woman since shortly after Aug. 2, the date when she alleges that Kane raped her in his Town of Hamburg home after meeting her in a downtown Buffalo night club and inviting her to a private gathering at the home.
Since the investigation began, Eoannou has made no public statements about the case and has repeatedly declined to comment on reports about the probe. An assistant in his office declined to discuss the specific subject matter of the press conference or to say whether the alleged victim will be there.
from Damien Cox of Sportsnet,
Few seem to like the fact the Chicago Blackhawks have invited Patrick Kane to their training camp. That seems clear, based on the columns and headlines and general commentary.
The Hawks are OK with it, needless to say, and clearly Kane is OK with it, as are his advisers. The NHL? That’s unclear, although it seems at least possible the league really wasn’t consulted at all, or told the club this decision was theirs to make. Hawks president John McDonough only said the team spoke to Kane’s "legal representatives" about the decision, and that was it.
So just the Hawks and Kane’s lawyers, both highly motivated to get him into camp regardless of any impact that may have on the league or the sport.
Those who passionately say Kane shouldn’t be there argue their case on two points.
First, they would argue it is an affront to women and the ugly problem of violence against women to allow Kane to get on with his life while it’s being decided whether he should be charged with rape.
It’s a fair argument. But he hasn’t been charged, and may never be charged.
from Steve Rosenbloom of the Chicago Tribune,
Tone deaf for an organization that always seems to play the right notes.
Particularly stunning was McDonough's characterizing the Hawks' three Stanley Cups in six years as a "Camelot'' era.
Seriously? "Camelot'' after refusing to comment on a sexual assault investigation?
The legal process is real and serious. Kane's fate hangs by it.
The upcoming season with many personnel changes was something for another day.
from Melissa Isaacson of ESPN,
Is it drinking? Is it lack of maturity? Lack of judgement? Lack of ability to understand how the world works, since he was discovered as that genius at age 14 and has never been “normal’’ and learned what normal young men do?
It’s over now—nobody cares what his issues are. Get it straight, or get out.
When he walked off the dais at Notre Dame, Kane sure didn’t look like a three-time Stanley Cup winner. He looked like a little, beaten loser.
-Rick Telander of the Chicago Sun-Times where you can read more on Kane.
Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane says he has the utmost respect for the legal process, and is confident that he’ll be absolved of all wrong doing.
added 4:32pm, Wath the John McDonough statement below...
I am watching the training camp press conference of the Chicago Blackhawks and t in attendance where Chicago Blackhawks president & CEO John McDonough, vice president/general manager Stan Bowman and head coach Joel Quenneville. Patrick Kane is also at the conference.
John McDonough says Patrick Kane will join the team at training camp.
Patrick Kane apologizes for the issues, will not comment on legal process but confident he has not done anything wrong and it will be proven.
More tweets added below at 3:33pm,
Left unanswered is why someone — a team, a teammate or the league — did not step in earlier, and tell Kane that he is no longer a man-child, but a 26-year-old man in danger of careening into a world of hurt, for himself or for others.
-Michael Powell of the New York Times where you can read more on Patrick Kane.
from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,
The NHL is already smartly distancing itself from one of its most prominent players. Kane wasn’t part of Tuesday’s kickoff media tour in Toronto, held annually by the league with national outlets and rights holders. The official word, of course, was that players are rotated and this year’s Chicago representatives were Toews and Conn Smythe Trophy winner Duncan Keith. Riiiiight.
But this year’s tour was moved from New York to Toronto to accommodate Wednesday’s World Cup of Hockey unveiling in Air Canada Centre. No offense to former Chicago teammate Brandon Saad of Columbus, Toronto’s James van Riemsdyk or New York Rangers defense standout Ryan McDonagh, but they’re not remotely close to being faces of USA Hockey.
A guy with three Cup rings is. But that aforementioned trio represented Team USA. No Kane. His absence was plainly obvious and chatter in Toronto was that the league and the team could be meeting with Kane as soon as Monday to make a preliminary decision about camp.
A Chicago Sun-Times column last week said Blackhawks President John McDonough was “volcanically outraged” when news of Kane’s latest misstep surfaced. It also said the team immediately dispatched a high-ranking member of its security corps to Buffalo to do its own investigation.
Here’s hoping the team knows the kind of backlash and distractions it would be up against and says to Kane he’s done for now. And if the team doesn’t, Gary Bettman certainly can.
more plus additional hockey notes...
from Jared S. Hopkins and Stacy St. Clair of the Chicago Tribune,
A western New York grand jury is expected to resume the sexual assault investigation into Blackhawks star Patrick Kane, his attorney told the Tribune on Thursday.
The Erie County district attorney's office postponed proceedings earlier this week, a move that raised questions about the direction of the high-profile case. Before the last-minute delay, Kane's accuser and a friend who was with her at Kane's lakefront home on the night of the alleged incident had been scheduled to appear before the grand jury Tuesday afternoon.
Kane's attorney, Paul Cambria, said Thursday that he did not know why prosecutors canceled the grand jury presentation but that the move did not come at his request. He also said he was told the proceedings would resume soon, though he would not discuss any other aspect of the case.
"We were informed that it (the grand jury) was rescheduled," Cambria said.
Sources said the case is slated to go before the grand jury in about two weeks, which puts it on a collision course with the Blackhawks' training camp, which opens Sept. 18.
continued (registration may be required)
from Damien Cox of Sportsnet,
Innocent until proven guilty, right? True enough, but it’s not so simple for Kane, or the Blackhawks, or the NHL, when it comes to allegations he sexually assaulted a women during the off-season at his lakeside mansion in Buffalo.
Details remain sketchy, or partial, and a grand jury called to deal with the matter was abruptly postponed on Tuesday, leading to another round of speculation about Kane, his accuser and where all this is heading.
Let’s be clear: Kane is at present the most high profile American player in the league. Stars like Mike Modano, Chris Chelios, Brian Leetch and others have retired, and until the likes of Auston Matthews and Jack Eichel hit the big stage in a big way, Kane is the marquee U.S. player.
And now he may not play for a while, depending on a whole lot of variables too complicated to explain in a simple paragraph.
But this is potentially a huge problem for the NHL at a time when all leagues are having to tred very carefully each time one of their players is accused of a crime that gets its fan base upset, not to mention people outside its fan base.
more including a video/audio piece with David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune talking Kane with Prime Time Sports.
from Dan Herbeck and Lou Michel of the Buffalo News,
Former Erie County District Attorney Frank J. Clark said he was surprised and baffled to learn about the postponement of grand jury proceedings.
“I was surprised, very surprised,” said Clark, who worked closely for many years with Sedita when Sedita was his lead homicide prosecutor.
Clark said he could think of three possible reasons why Sedita would delay presentation of evidence.
“I have delayed presenting a case to a grand jury in the past, and usually the reason is that the defendant’s attorney came to me and said, ‘Please, don’t present this, let’s work out some kind of plea deal,’ ” Clark said. “And we worked out a plea deal.”
Based on everything he has heard about the Kane case, Clark said it appears highly unlikely that Cambria is trying to work out a guilty plea for his client.
“The second possibility is the victim’s attorney coming to the prosecutor and saying, ‘Please hold off on the grand jury for awhile. My client is very upset, she’s in a lot of turmoil, and she just isn’t ready for this at this point,” Clark said. “If he tells you that, you’re going to surmise that they’re trying to work out some kind of civil agreement between the victim and the defendant. But that agreement would not, in any way, be binding on the prosecutor. He could still proceed with his case if he feels strongly about it.”
The third possibility cited by Clark was “witness availability.”
On Sept. 8 Patrick Kane’s agent Pat Brisson provided Sportsnet with an update on the latest developments surrounding the police investigation into his star client.
via Lou Michel of the Buffalo News,
A grand jury investigation into rape allegations against National Hockey League star Patrick Kane set to begin Tuesday afternoon has been abruptly postponed, according to three current and former law enforcement sources with knowledge of the case.
The reason for the delay appears to involve the possibility of ongoing settlement talks between attorneys for Kane and the victim, two of the sources said.
The Buffalo News last week confirmed that summonses had been issued by the Erie County District Attorney’s Office to individuals directing them to appear before the grand jury, with the first witness set for 2 p.m. Tuesday.
from Tim Graham of the Buffalo News,
The National Hockey League and the Chicago Blackhawks do not want Patrick Kane representing their brands.
The Buffalo News has learned that Kane was not invited to the NHL’s annual preseason commercial shoot Tuesday and Wednesday, when the top 40 veteran players gather to make television promos that will appear throughout the coming season.
The NHL and the Blackhawks mostly have been silent on Kane’s status since a woman accused him of raping her Aug. 2 at his lakefront mansion in the Town of Hamburg. Not inviting the four-time All-Star to this year’s commercial shoot shows that the NHL and the Blackhawks want to keep their distance from one of the world’s most identifiable players.
The News, citing multiple sources, reported Friday that the rape investigation was nearing an end and that the case would be presented to a grand jury this week.
The NHL did not respond to a request for comment on the decision not to invite Kane.
added 6:46am on 9/8/15, Numerous changes have been made to the original article, clicking the link to the Buffalo News will show that.
from Dan Herbeck, Lou Michel and Tim Graham of the Buffalo News,
For more than a month, Town of Hamburg police and the District Attorney’s Office have been investigating the young woman’s allegations that Kane raped her in his Hamburg lakefront home early on the morning of Aug. 2 after meeting her in a downtown Buffalo nightclub and inviting her to his home for a private gathering. The investigation has been conducted in strict secrecy, with a few details leaking out through sources on both sides of the case.
Sedita’s predecessor as district attorney, Frank J. Clark, and longtime Buffalo defense attorney Mark J. Mahoney both told The News that they think Sedita is making the right move in presenting the case to a grand jury.
“If I were in his shoes, I would probably do the same thing – put the evidence before an impartial body of citizens and let them hear as much evidence as possible about both sides,” Clark said. “You have a young woman who has made a very serious allegation, and you have a very high-profile athlete who, I would assume, is claiming he didn’t do it. I would give both Kane and the woman who made the accusation an opportunity to tell their stories before the grand jury.”
While the district attorney cannot force Kane to testify before the grand jury, there may be good reasons why Kane may want to testify, Mahoney said.
“Should he testify? … That can be a very hard decision for a defense attorney to make,” Mahoney said. “Some defense attorneys are strongly against having their clients appear before a grand jury, because sometimes, clients make mistakes. But grand jury testimony can also be a very good tool for a defense attorney. It’s his opportunity to get his client’s side of the story out there before the grand jury.
2 On Your Side's Scott Levin has learned that a woman who was with Patrick Kane's alleged rape victim has been subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury on September 8.
Chicago Blackhawks player and south Buffalo native Patrick Kane is the focus of a rape investigation by Hamburg Police, although he has not been charged in the case....
Former Erie County District Attorney Frank Clark says he does not expect any decisions to be made by the grand jury before the end of this month. In fact, he says this process could take weeks or even months to play out.
"Right now, it looks as though the decider as to whether or not Patrick Kane is guilty of any criminal conduct or not will be an Erie County grand jury," says Clark.
With no criminal charges filed, a grand jury will take up the Kane case. Clark says the grand jury process may have started some time ago.
"They may have been listening to the case for a while, and we're just finding out about it. Or it could be that both the police and the prosecutor felt that they had some investigative work to do before they were comfortable in starting a grand jury action," he says.
from Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Tmes,
Jonathan Toews indirectly addressed the ongoing Patrick Kane situation on a Winnipeg radio station on Thursday, saying, “You stay together as a team.”
Toews was asked how, as captain, he deals with off-ice concerns such as the police investigation involving Kane and a woman in Hamburg, N.Y., though the radio host on TSN-1290 only referred to Kane as “one of your star teammates.” Toews said the Blackhawks can draw on recent experience.
“I think you’ve just got to have confidence that things like that will resolve themselves over time,” Toews told the Hustler and Lawless show. “And for the time being, you stay together as a team, you support your teammate [or] teammates that are maybe going through a rough patch. We saw it last year with some rumors that spread around social media about several guys in our locker room. It’s not the first time we’ve seen situations like that.”
from Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times,
... Simply put, the Hawks are the model franchise, on and off the ice.
Which is why Patrick Kane might be done in Chicago. And why maybe he should be.
It’s still uncertain if the Hawks are seriously considering trading Kane in light of an ongoing police investigation in Hamburg, N.Y. But if they are, they won’t have any trouble finding any takers.
At least five teams contacted the Hawks once the Buffalo News first reported the investigation — which involves Kane and a woman at his Hamburg home — and said they’d be willing trade partners should the Hawks decide to cut ties with their superstar winger, according to a league source. The 26-year-old is entering the first year of a record-setting eight-year, $84-million contract.
Kane has not been charged with a crime — and that can’t be said enough — for the events of Aug. 2, which are being investigated by both police and the district attorney’s office. But another source said that Hawks brass had sternly warned Kane not to put himself in any more bad situations — and put the team in a negative light — after his much-publicized Cinco de Mayo escapades in Madison, Wis., in 2012. That was supposed to be his last strike.
So regardless of the legal outcome of the investigation, Kane’s future with the team is murky at best.
The brand, the titles and the sweater go hand in hand as far as the Hawks are concerned, but no one player is bigger than the team and the Hawks and their litany of sponsors do not want to be known as a group that values winning above decency.
They do not want to be the Baltimore Ravens after the Ray Rice debacle, so the Hawks find themselves painted into a corner and Kane is holding the brush.
So you wonder just how angry the Hawks must be that they are forced to ponder the unthinkable as it applies to Kane's future, not to mention the hit they'll take on the ice if they have to move one of the league's best players and the hit they'll take off the ice if the details of this case are ugly.
Again, this all takes a back seat to real life and what it means for the accuser and Kane, but there are also questions being pondered on West Madison that go beyond hockey.
The guess among NHL folks is that the Hawks probably know more about this than the rest of us and are planning accordingly.
The guess is they have spoken to the commissioner about their options.
The guess is they have probably fielded calls from teams already interested if the Hawks move on from Kane.
The guess is they are considering everything from absolutely nothing to a trade, and all possibilities in between.
-Barry Rozner of the Chicago Daily-Herald where you can read more on this topic.
Social media is riddled with comments from people ripping and defending Kane, demanding justice this way or that, saying Kane’s drinking is to blame, on and on. A Buffalo bar owner has weighed in. So has Kane’s driver, an off-duty cop.
It’s an ugly scene, this battlefield — even if all we can see is smoke from the distant cannons.
Even though Kane has lost a lucrative deal with EA Sports, and his image with teammate Jonathan Toews hoisting the Stanley Cup on the cover of a video game has been replaced by one with Toews alone holding the Cup, Kane is, at this moment, as innocent of a serious crime as you or I.
But here’s one undebatable item, resonating in Hawks fans’ hearts, no backup required: The joy of Chicago’s 2015 Stanley Cup triumph has vanished in the breeze.
-Rick Telander of the Chicago Sun-Times where you can read more on the Patrick Kane case.
from Cari Grieb at The Sporting News,
The NHL, like other professional sports leagues, has become mired in controversy over domestic violence and sexual assault without taking a strong stand. Much of this league detachment can be attributed to the media and the Internet, which has overly-sensationalized athlete controversies in the Post-Ray Rice era, and has made fans equally desensitized.
Last September, Commissioner Gary Bettman took an active stance against domestic violence and sexual assault while speaking in Toronto. In the months since, he has expressed no interest in negotiating a domestic violence and sexual assault policy with the NHL Players Association; to the Commissioner’s Office, its current laissez faire approach to discipline is working fine.
The ongoing investigation into rape allegations facing the Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane and the lack of action on both the league-wide and team level, illuminates the acute, pervasive issue for America’s fourth most popular professional sport.
Since the commencement of the Kane investigation, the NHL has sat idly by, waiting for a charge to be filed against the three-time Stanley Cup champion before taking any disciplinary action.
from Lizz Schumer of The Sun,
HAMBURG — The Patrick Kane investigation continues to fester, and the more well-intentioned (or otherwise) comments come out, the more the parties involved get hurt. In the absence of statements from Kane or the young ladies (allegedly) involved in the incident, the only quotes in the press should be “no comment.”
Local commentator Alan Bedenko of “The Daily Public” has vocally opposed some local media’s coverage of the incident from the beginning, particularly the inclusion of statements from SkyBar owner Mark Croce. Recently, the off-duty police officer who gave Kane, a friend of his and two young women a ride back to Kane’s house, spoke on the record as a friend of the hockey star’s. Buffalo police officer Thomas English, spoke as a friend, as he is barred from speaking to the press in an official capacity. Bedenko was critical of his statement as he has been of Croce’s remarks about the woman’s behavior and Kane’s bar tab, criticized the officer. “Everyone – and I mean everyone – should take a cue from all the lawyers in the case and stop talking to the press,” Bedenko wrote. “The same goes for the alleged victim’s friends who were trying to help. None of them are witnesses as to what happened, yet they’re talking to the media about the alleged victim’s character.”
from Patrick Rishe at Forbes,
On July 9th of 2014, Patrick Kane signed an 8-year $84 million extension to remain with the Chicago Blackhawks, hockey’s best franchise recently with 3 Stanley Cup victories in 6 years. This included a $44 million signing bonus.
That said, we can understand why Kane may not be all that concerned with losing millions in endorsements as a result of public perceptions regarding his off-ice behavior.
However, if these latest allegations are true, both Kane and the Blackhawks will find themselves in a most precarious position.
And even if innocent, the unfortunate connection to this type of story completely ruins his earnings ability as a product endorser.
Kane is facing allegations of raping a woman who came to his home in suburban Buffalo on August 2nd after a night out on the town. Though the investigation into the matter is ongoing, the mere allegations were enough to prompt EA Sports to pull Kane from their EA Sports NHL 2016 cover (now Kane’s teammate and team captain, Jonathan Toews, graces the cover alone).
Furthermore, other companies with whom he represents (Bauer Hockey, McDonald’s) are closely monitoring the current situation as they decide on whether to keep ties with Kane.
If charges are filed against Kane, the case will dwarf anything that has come before in the NHL. The league and the Blackhawks have been lucky that all this is going on during cottage season, when the world is paying little attention to events in Hamburg.
All that is about to change, no matter what local officials decide to do. At best, Kane’s reputation is permanently tainted, the myth that he had grown up since his previous brushes with the law now in tatters. At worst, the NHL will have the man who may be its biggest American star in the dock facing a rape charge.
At the very least, the NHL needs to send the right signal by suspending Kane until this is resolved, one way or another. It’s pretty clear the Blackhawks aren’t going to act unless the NHL forces their hand — and the time to act is now.
-Jack Todd at the Montreal Gazette where you can read more on this topic.
from the Buffalo News,
An off-duty Buffalo police lieutenant served as Patrick Kane’s chauffeur on the night the hockey star was accused of raping a young woman in his Town of Hamburg home.
Lt. Thomas English told The Buffalo News that he drove Kane, the alleged rape victim, her female friend and a male friend of Kane’s to the National Hockey League player’s home on Old Lake Shore Road early on the morning of Aug. 2.
English said investigators from the Erie County District Attorney’s Office have interviewed him as they investigate the allegation against Kane.
English said he supports Kane, a longtime family friend who has employed him for the past five years. In photos that could be viewed on English’s Facebook page as recently as Thursday, he is seen with the Stanley Cup at a celebration with Kane in 2010.
The lieutenant acknowledged that he has no way of knowing what happened between Kane and the alleged victim inside the house. Since the allegation was made, he said, he has had no contact with Kane or his family. However, he was seen outside Kane’s Hamburg residence on the Wednesday after the incident was reported, picking up litter.
Law enforcement sources told The News that Buffalo police are conducting an internal investigation to determine whether English was with Kane at any time he was supposed to be on duty the night of the alleged rape.
Among the Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons' sports notes...
Lou Lamoriello is an autocrat. Although, a former NHL general manager referred to him the other day as a dictator. Mike Babcock is somewhat of an autocrat as a coach. It’s his way or the highway. Jacques Lemaire is about as rigid as they come. What’s going to be fascinating is how these men of large minds, large egos, and total belief in their own ways find a way to work together. The Leafs could be way more interesting off the ice than on it ...
I see where young Auston Matthews, likely first pick in the 2016 NHL entry draft, will be paid $400,000 to play in Zurich this season. That’s slightly more than the going rate for under the table money in the OHL ...
The NHL’s summer? Superstar Patrick Kane investigated; Ryan O’Reilly arrested; Slava Voynov off to jail; Jarret Stoll caught with cocaine; Mike Richards, first investigated, then had his contract voided; And the Canadian dollar just keeps on dropping. And how was your summer? ...
This will surprise some Leaf fans: Dave Nonis, the fired general manager, had three offers to join NHL teams before deciding to take a senior consultant’s job with the Anaheim Ducks. Among the teams interested in Nonis were the Montreal Canadiens ...
And this one, we're familiar with in Metro Detroit, because far, far more of a stretch than it's made out to be in the out-of-town circles:
Many who admire Mike Ilitch, owner of the Red Wings and Tigers, are concerned about his ability to properly operate his franchises. Ilitch is 86, not in the best health, and there is a lot of family interference around him these days. The Dombrowski firing seemed odd as did the quick hiring of Alex Avila to replace him.
Simmons continues and comments on the Patrick Kane situation...
Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: anaheim+ducks, auston+matthews, dave+nonis, detroit+red+wings, jacques+lemaire, jarret+stoll, lou+lamoriello, mike+babcock, mike+ilitch, mike+richards, patrick+kane, ryan+o'reilly, slava+voynov, toronto+maple+leafs
from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,
My job calls for sharing my opinions. Often, it means taking a position. That’s why they pay me, but we’re not talking about the Bills’ starting quarterback or the Sabres needing a right-handed shooting defenseman. This isn’t about some athlete driving while intoxicated or getting into a barroom brawl. This is a rape allegation.
You want my position? My position is that people need to stop taking positions. They should allow everyone involved to perform their duties with the idea – the mere hope – that facts eventually will emerge and the legal system will work. Nothing good can come from conclusions drawn from speculation and fueled by emotion.
Public assumptions and comments that have been made without people knowing the facts need to cease. It includes SkyBar owner and real-estate developer Mark Croce, whose remarks about not having “skin in the game” and a woman flirting with Kane were way out of line.
So let’s take a deep breath and a step back while the case unfolds.
Two lives have been turned upside down before our eyes. Both could be ruined by the time the case is closed, if they’re not already.
This is no time to rush to judgment, whether you’re a sex-crimes expert or proud owner of a No. 88 jersey. It’s difficult to comprehend Kane would commit such a crime. It’s difficult to comprehend a woman would concoct such an allegation. Perhaps everyone can agree that there will be no winners.
We've tried to avoid Patrick Kane-related gossip-y stories here on KK, but this announcement from EA Sports is worth noting:
from David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune,
What do the Hawks do if Kane remains in legal limbo as the Sept. 18 reporting date nears? The only way they avoid that Catch-22 is if the DA announces in the next month that no charges will be filed. But if Kane faces charges or the investigation remains open, the Hawks face a dilemma in which both sides of the debate can be defended.
Here's my side: In the post-Ray Rice era of professional sports, a first-class franchise such as the Hawks cannot allow a player facing serious allegations to represent it until more clarity about the case exists. That clarity could come sooner rather than later in Kane's case, but it is missing now.
The thing about setting a standard of excellence as high as the Hawks have is living up to it; no single player, not even a living legend, can compromise that commitment to integrity.
An NHL dressing room is not a courtroom; depriving a player such as Kane the right to skate indefinitely is not the same as depriving him of his freedom. It serves as protection against the possibility Kane's alleged transgressions will further embarrass one of the classiest organizations in pro sports. As a former NFL executive texted me Tuesday: "If Kane was in the NFL, he would not play or practice again until (the) case is settled."
added 8:26am, Twitter reacts to Patrick Kane and it isn't pretty...
via Mark Lazerus tweets,
Really disheartening that every update on the Kane situation brings a barrage of hateful, misogynistic responses towards an alleged victim.
You preach restraint, but we should reserve judgment on all sides, not only the side that you like best.
from The Buffalo News,
Sources with knowledge of the investigation said that the young woman who has accused the hockey superstar of rape had bite marks on her shoulders and a scratch on her leg after the alleged attack.
The woman alleges that Kane invited her and a female friend to his home for a private party after they met him last Saturday night at SkyBar, a popular nightclub on Franklin Street, the sources said.
Shortly after she and her friend arrived at Kane’s home on Old Lakeshore Road, the accuser alleges that she went by herself into another room, where Kane followed her, overpowered her and raped her, the sources said.
The woman left Kane’s home with her friend and used a cellphone to call a relative immediately after the alleged attack. She then went to a local hospital for examination, and police were called afterward, the sources said.
The alleged attack occurred about 4 a.m. last Sunday, about an hour after Kane was seen leaving SkyBar.
A person who knows the woman described her as frantic and traumatized when she called her relative to report what happened.
SkyBar’s owner, Mark Croce, told The Buffalo News on Saturday night that he has no way of knowing what happened between the woman and Kane at Kane’s home. He said he only knows Kane casually and has never been to his home.
But Croce told The News that he and several of his employees noticed a young woman “hanging all over” Kane at SkyBar for at least two hours that night, putting her hands on his arms and “being very forward, very flirtatious with him.” He said he does not know the woman and does not know her name.
from Rick Telander of the Chicago Sun-Times,
Hawks president John McDonough is out of his mind with anger and disgust over this last Kane incident during the offseason. McDonough came in and helped engineer the Hawks into perhaps the most successful and envied franchise in all of pro sports. It would not be wrong to call him, as one would call most great executives, a control freak. He wants the message controlled so that his product is the best any fan could want: a wildly successful, family-friendly, hugely entertaining and scandal-free franchise that does nothing wrong.
If the time is right and the disgust goes unabated, McDonough will dump Kane from the organization like a rotten timber from a mansion.
I spoke earlier of Kane’s issues, and here, I believe, is the third: He is Peter Pan. He has never had to grow up.
This is because he was identified as a hockey genius when he was just a child, and so much smoke has been blown up his behind that he might reasonably be expected to lift off the ground like a hot-air balloon.
He never went to college. He never truly matured. He never was able to shed the hockey culture of excess that has ruled for generations.
This is terrible for the Hawks. Of course, it is terrible for the woman involved — if, in fact, this situation is real and true. And for Kane, it’s do or die.
from Tim Baffoe of CBSChicago,
You don’t know him on a meaningful level. Maybe he signed your kid’s hat that one time. Maybe you took a picture with him at a golf outing a few years ago.
But Patrick Kane is not your friend. You are not his dawg, and he is not your bro. For all intents and purposes he doesn’t care about you no matter how many times you’ve swooned at him saying something about “not being able to accomplish this without you great fans.”
And you need to stop with the garbage default setting of rushing to defend him. Even under the guise of “innocent until proven guilty.”
History tells us that a story like this sexual assault allegation against Kane does not end well for anyone involved. It also suggests that should an outcome conclude in favor of Kane, the rape culture we live in and unbalanced system of law enforcement and judicial process in sexual assault cases does not mean he did nothing wrong.
I want you to realize that right now and acknowledge it and give it the credence it deserves. A lack of charge, prosecution, or guilty verdict over sexual assault does not mean sexual assault did not occur. It’s entirely possible no wrongdoing on Kane’s part went on, but innocent until proven guilty applies to this particular celebrity avoiding jail time. It does not exonerate him from what he and his accuser know happened between them. It does not help his frat boy reputation, which isn’t illegal but damn sure isn’t palatable once is crosses the line between drunk video cult hero and this kind of accusation. And it does not make his words at the most recent Blackhawks rally any less prophetic.
added 12:44pm, you can watch the brief statement for the police chief below...
from Rick Telander of the Chicago Sun-Times,
Oh, boy, this could be, and I say, could be — if things turn out in the most negative way possible — the worst thing to happen to a star athlete in Chicago history.
It could be the worst thing to happen to a star athlete in, well, any pro sport in recent memory. Maybe ever.
The report is sketchy at this time, but various reports from Buffalo are saying police are investigating Patrick Kane, and a woman is involved.
If this investigation takes a left turn for Kane and goes straight off the cliff, I don’t think it’s too much to say the Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup era is over and the NHL is badly wounded.
Kane is the wild child with the magic skates and a sushi chef’s hands who has captivated Chicago and much of the hockey-loving world with his skills on ice.
His previous drinking exploits and public misbehavior — including punching a cab driver over a fare dispute in Buffalo and showing up in a photo apparently passed-out drunk in Madison, Wisconsin — were glossed over because he was ‘‘a kid.’’
added 8:19am, from Barry Rozner of the Chicago Daily-Herald,
from Lou Michel and Robert J. McCarthy of the Buffalo News,
Hamburg police are investigating an incident reportedly involving Patrick Kane, the Chicago Blackhawks star, two sources with knowledge of the probe have told The Buffalo News.
Two sources said Hamburg police officials have forbidden their officers and detectives from publicly discussing the investigation.
“We can neither confirm nor deny the existence or nonexistence of a criminal investigation until such a time as a person is charged with a crime,” said Hamburg Police Chief Gregory G. Wickett.
Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III used very similar language when asked about an investigation.
“We neither confirm nor deny the existence or nonexistence of an investigation until such time as someone has been charged with a crime,” Sedita said.
The Toronto Sun's Mike Zeisberger suggests that five members of the Chicago Blackhawks are Hockey Hall of Fame-worthy candidates already:
Joel Quenneville, the man who is third on the all-time regular-season coaching wins list and the owner of three Stanley Cup rings as head coach.
Duncan Keith, the Canadian defenceman whose trophy case continues to balloon, thanks to three Cups, the 2015 Conn Smythe as playoff MVP, two Norris Trophies as the NHL’s top defenceman, and two Olympic gold medals.
Patrick Kane, who has been a key cog in the Hawks Cup runs, scoring the title-winning goal against Philly in 2010, then setting up Keith for exact same thing in Chicago’s 2-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday.
Jonathan Toews, the valiant captain of this dynasty who himself has hoisted the Cup three times and has two Olympic gold medals as well.
And Marian Hossa, three-time Cup champion and supremely skilled two-way player who has 1,056 career points and is just 14 goals shy of 500.
With these five, along with defenceman Brent Seabrook, making up the heart-and-soul core of this team, how can anyone be surprised at the renewed success these Hawks continue to have?
USA Today's Kevin Allen makes quite the assertion this evening...
We don't have to debate whether the Chicago Blackhawks are a dynasty because Gary Bettman made them one by commissioner's decree. He referred to them as a "dynasty" in his remarks leading up to presenting the Stanley Cup to Jonathan Toews after the Blackhawks won the Cup with a 2-0 triumph against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final.
"I don't know what (dynasty) means," Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane said. "We've got three in six years. I know that's pretty good."
That makes the Blackhawks the most decorated team in the post-salary cap era, and deserving to be called one of the top teams in NHL history.
Their current run doesn't measure up statistically to the great Montreal Canadiens teams from 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Toe Blake coached the Canadiens to five consecutive Stanley Cups from 1956-60. Scotty Bowman, who is an adviser for the Blackhawks, guided the Canadiens to four consecutive titles from 1976-79. The Canadiens had a 16-3 record in those four Stanley Cup Finals. Now Scotty's son, Stan, has been general manager of the three Stanley Cup winners in Chicago.
Chicago's run also isn't as lengthy as the New York Islanders run of four consecutive championships from 1980-83. The Edmonton Oilers also have their own distinction by winning five Stanley Cups over seven seasons from 1984 to 1990.
But the Blackhawks are now in the conversation to be called one of the great teams because they have won three titles at a time when the league is in a period of undeniable competitive balance. The statistical difference between the No. 1 team in the league and the No. 16 isn't as pronounced as it once was.
from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,
"It's a chance for this organization to do something special," Kane said after today's morning skate in the United Center. "It's one of things where you're tossing and turning, your mind is racing. At this time of year, everybody is thinking about what's going to happen. The best thing is go out and play, let your mind rest."
Easier said than done. Kane said Chicago players talked about all the distractions surrounding this game when they met here yesterday and took care of families, tickets and the like on Sunday. Today is all business.
"We know this is the game we could win the Cup and it would be special to win it here at home," Kane said. "But let's focus on winning one hockey game and all the other storylines will stick out."
But Kane admitted that's no small task.
"It's tough to put your mind off that and think about other things that don't include the end result of winning here tonight. It's going to be in your mind no matter what," he said. "When you're away from the rink, you try to shut your mind off and try not to worry about everything that could happen. When you get to rink, turn it back on and try to get yourself as ready as possible. It's a great situation to be in. We'd rather be in this situation having our minds racing and thinking about all the things that can happen tonight than not. It's a pretty fun day."
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Chicago’s win sets up an intriguing final against the Tampa Bay Lightning, a young up-and-coming team that probably reminds the Blackhawks of where they were back in, say, 2009, when their extraordinary run of playoff success started. Back then, Kane and Toews were just a couple of newbies, highly touted young players who had their whole professional lives in front of them.
How would that go? Who could really say?
But now, eight years into their respective careers, the answers have flooded in, and they are among the most decorated players of their generation. Toews, at 27, has two Olympic gold medals on his résumé, a world junior championship, plus two Stanley Cup championships, with a decent chance at winning a third. Kane, 26, took home silver Olympic medals when Toews won gold, but has been integral in the Blackhawks’ rise too – from a sorry, poorly run organization to one that hums along on all cylinders, willing to take bold steps and big chances to win in the now, because championships are what matters in pro sports, not close calls.
Next year, Toews’s and Kane’s salaries rise by about $4-million (U.S.), which will create new salary-cap headaches for general manager Stan Bowman. So time may be of the essence.
“We’ve had some good accomplishments in here, some things to be proud of, but at the same time, who knows if these opportunities are going to come around this often?” Kane acknowledged. “We thought we were right there last year and didn’t get the job done. This team learns from different experiences and different mistakes and tries to incorporate that.”
Among the Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons' Sunday notes:
Word is that Mike Babcock is pushing for [Mark] Hunter to be named general manager of the Leafs. Brendan Shanahan would be wise to look elsewhere. Shanahan needs Hunter to find players. A general manager won’t be able to spend the kind of time scouting that the Leafs require to properly rebuild. Hunter may want the job but the practicality of it doesn’t make sense...
Those who say this is the last shot for the Chicago Blackhawks aren’t really paying attention. Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Duncan Keith — the best 1-2-3 in hockey — are signed through 2023. Corey Crawford is signed until 2020. Marian Hossa is signed through 2021. Niklas Hjarmalsson is signed until 2019. So if you lose a Patrick Sharp here, a Brad Richards there and sign Johnny Oduya, Brandon Saad and Brent Seabrook to new deals, there’s no reason this kind of success can’t continue for several more years...
Two more things on Keith: 1) His cap hit is $5.5 million, making his contract one of the best in hockey. By comparison, the Dion Phaneuf contract looks ridiculous. 2) Should the Blackhawks win Saturday night, Keith may be the leading candidate to win the Conn Smythe Trophy, but he’s not a Norris Trophy finalist. For the record, he was on my ballot, ahead of both P.K. Subban and Erik Karlsson, who are up for the award.
If Steve Yzerman can juggle the salary cap prudently, the Tampa Bay Lightning will be Stanley Cup contenders for years. Steven Stamkos, Tyler Johnson, Nikita Kucherov, Ondrej Palat, Victor Hedman and Alex Killorn are all 25 and under. And figuring they pick up some assets for the disappointing Jonathan Drouin, that should make them even stronger...
When Brian Lawton tried to acquire defenceman Tomas Kaberle when he was general manager in Tampa, the Leafs first asked for college kid Alex Killorn. That conversation didn’t last long.
Simmons continues, discussing the usual potpourri of sports topics...
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Tags: alex+killorn, brad+richards, brandon+saad, brendan+shanahan, brent+seabrook, chicago+blackhawks, dion+phaneuf, duncan+keith, erik+karlsson, johnny+oduya, jonathan+toews, marian+hossa, mark+hunter, mike+babcock, nikita+kucherov, niklas+hjalmarsson, ondrej+palat, patrick+kane, pk+subban, pk+subban, steve+yzerman, steven+stamkos, tampa+bay+lightning, toronto+maple+leafs, victor+hedman
The Chicago Blachkawks defeated the Minnesota Wild 4-3--hanging on to squeeze out what was at one point a 4-1 win--on Thursday night, sweeping the Wild and advancing to the Western Conference Final.
This goal by Patrick Kane summarizes the Blackhawks' mastery of the Wild--and Devan Dubnyk, who twisted and turned slinkily but could not stop this 2-on-1 opportunity by Bryan Bickell and Kane: