Hawks Insider

Patrick Kane opens up about decision to leave Blackhawks

/ by Charlie Roumeliotis
Presented By Nationwide Insurance Agent Jeff Vukovich
Hawks Insider

NEW YORK — Patrick Kane wrestled a long time with deciding whether to waive his full no-movement clause ahead of the March 3 trade deadline. In his statement via the Blackhawks, he called it "an emotional time for me and my family."

On Thursday, Kane was introduced by the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden and elaborated on his decision to leave the Blackhawks. He called it a "whirlwind" of a week.

"I mean, definitely you go back and forth in your head a bunch of times about what's right, but I just feel like this is such an amazing opportunity with what they have going on here in New York," Kane said. "When the option was still there to possibly make a move, it obviously wasn't the easiest decision, but just really excited to be here with this team.

"With the amount of skill and good players they have here, it's another chance to make a run, so I felt like it'd be a good experience and get out of the comfort zone a little bit and be able to play for a different franchise, different team. They have a great team here, so you're coming into a good situation."

Kane was drafted No. 1 overall in 2007 by Chicago, where he spent 16 years and won three Stanley Cups. He also won a Hart Trophy, Art Ross Trophy and Conn Smythe Trophy, among other accolades. He ranks second in franchise history with 1,225 points.

You can imagine why he was emotional about leaving, even though he knows the Blackhawks are in a long-term rebuild.

"There were a bunch of different steps along the way that led to it, but they're in a different situation now, right?" Kane said. "They're rebuilding, they're trying to collect assets and that's just the way it is, that's the situation we're in. It's never really real until it happens, and then once it happens, it starts getting very real.


"But like I said, excited for the experience, the opportunity, the chance to play with a different organization, different players. Just excited about it all."

One of the things Kane is trying to wrap his mind around is wearing Ranger blue instead of Blackhawk red. Heck, the entire city of Chicago is trying to do the same as well.

"It's different, right?" Kane said. "You have to get used to it. It kind of reminds me of when you go play for Team USA and World Championships or Olympics, things like that, you're putting on different equipment, different gear, you're trying to get used to it, but always coming back to that Blackhawks gear.

"So, it's a little bit different this time around, but this is obviously an Original Six franchise, historic franchise, amazing building to play in, they have great fans. So it's exciting, too."

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