Fans of the Winnipeg Jets had a rocky relationship with Evander Kane, and there’s no doubt he’ll draw the ire of the MTS Centre crowd Sunday afternoon when the Jets host the Buffalo Sabres.
Kane’s tenure as a Jet had its ups and downs, and while fans loved his on-ice play, some of his off-ice decisions rubbed Winnipeggers the wrong way. There was the infamous “money phone” photo, Kane’s photo of him doing pushups with money stacks on his back and numerous unsubstantiated claims of off-ice misbehavior.
The final incident that led to Kane’s eventual trade to the Buffalo Sabres came when Kane allegedly had a tracksuit he wore to the rink — which was reportedly in violation of team dress code — thrown into the shower by then-teammate Dustin Byfuglien. Jets fans aren’t about to let that last one slide when Kane hits the ice Sunday.
For Kane’s return, Jets fans have decided to rally together and head to the game clad in tracksuits in order to mock the former Winnipeg winger.
Ahead of Sunday, the hashtag #TrackSuitNight has picked up serious steam on Twitter and has garnered media attention throughout Winnipeg. Kane didn’t seem phased by the idea or the heckling he’s almost certain to face. When asked about fans taunting him and the potential for Jets’ faithful to make light of the alleged track suit incident, Kane didn’t give any sign he was bothered in the slightest.
“I have no reaction to that,” Kane said following the Sabres’ practice in Winnipeg Saturday.
Most of Kane’s media availability Saturday focused around his return to Winnipeg and what it would be like to play against the Jets. Kane commented on summer remarks that if there were two players in the league he’d like to fight, it would be former Jets teammates Blake Wheeler and Andrew Ladd. Kane said that he didn’t regret making the comment to Barstool Sports and that it was up to media to decide whether or not he was joking when he said it.
“I have good memories here, playing for [the Jets] and some of the season’s we had,” Kane said. “Now I’ve moved on to Buffalo and that’s where my focus is. I really don’t think too much about Winnipeg at all, and I’m enjoying my life in Buffalo.”
Heading into Sunday's game, Kane hasn't registered a point in six straight games and the Sabres have dropped their past six contests by a combined score of 21-8. If there was a game for Kane to score, though, it would certainly be Sunday's matchup against the Jets.