WINNIPEG – Evander Kane will return to the Winnipeg Jets (35-34-10) lineup tonight when they host the Minnesota Wild (40-26-12).
The forward was a healthy scratch in the Jets’ 4-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.
“I was obviously disappointed,” said Kane. “But it was his (Maurice) decision. That was it.”
With just two goals in his last 20 games, Kane is stuck in one of the worst slumps of his young career. Neither Kane nor Jets head coach Paul Maurice would get into the specifics Monday following the team’s pre-game skate about why the 22-year-old was benched.
“It is what it is,” said Maurice. “The rules are the rules. If he had robbed a bank and had 50 people hostage at his house, I’d be concerned about the speculation because people keep talking about it. I’m done with it. I’ve given it enough emotion and attention.”
Kane was also asked if he’d request a trade in the off-season but didn’t exactly quiet the speculation.
“I’m here to answer hockey questions,” said Kane.
Kane will probably start the game skating on a line with Michael Frolik and Bryan Little. Andrew Ladd will not play against the Wild. The captain is listed as day-to-day with Maurice hinting he might not return this season at all. Dustin Byfuglien is done for the year after tearing a muscle against the Maple Leafs.
Michael Hutchinson will start in goal for the Jets – his first career NHL start.