The NHL suspended San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane for 21 games for submitting a fake Covid vaccination card.
Back in August the NHL informed its teams that all players and hockey operations staff will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman the memo stated that “Any person whose job, role, position, or access entails or entitles them to have personal interactions (within 12 feet) with Club Hockey Operations personnel (including Players) are required to be fully vaccinated.”
Kane, one of the NHL’s few black players, stated that he will seek counseling in order to help him “make better decisions in the future”.
“I would like to apologize to my teammates, the San Jose Sharks organization, and all Sharks fans for violating the NHL COVID protocols,” he said in a statement released by the NHLPA. “I made a mistake, one I sincerely regret and take responsibility for. During my suspension, I will continue to participate in counseling to help me make better decisions in the future. When my suspension is over, I plan to return to the ice with great effort, determination, and love for the game of hockey.”?
The San Jose Sharks have also released an official statement on this terrible ordeal….you know, him opting to not vaccinate but wanting to keep his job.
Kane will forfeit $1.68 million of his $7 million salary for the season. The forfeited money will be going to the players’ EAF, Emergency Assistance Fund.
This isn’t the first time Kane has had a run-in with investigations and the administration of the NHL. He was recently cleared after an investigation into allegations made by his wife, Deanna Kane, that he bet on hockey games as well as facing allegations of sexual assault and domestic violence.
He can’t get out of this though. The league determined that the Covid protocols were indeed violated. A person familiar with the investigation said earlier this month that the league was looking into allegations that Kane submitted a fake vaccination card. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because details weren’t made public.
Using a fake vaccination card is illegal in both the United States and Canada, as well as against NHL rules.
Commissioner Gary Bettman said last week that only four players on active rosters hadn’t been vaccinated.
He decided not to appeal the suspension set down by the league and will not count against the Sharks salary cap. Captain Logan Couture and coach Bob Boughner have said they have not spoken with him since the suspension was announced.
“Since day one, we’ve really kept our focus on the job at hand, and that’s getting through training camp and getting our structure and details down, and then obviously the start of our season,” Boughner said. “We haven’t sat there and had a team meeting or a team talk about it. Really, we’re just worried about the 23 guys that we have here and try and win as many hockey games as we can.”
He has not been around the team since the start of San Jose’s training camp on Sept. 22 by mutual agreement while he was under multiple NHL investigations.
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