The most moving moments for Patrick Kane were the pre-match warm-ups and introductions. Here’s what my first night playing for the Rangers looked like. Kane skated on the ice at Madison Square Garden about 30 minutes before Thursday’s opening showdown.
“It’s a special place to play,” Kane said after the game. ”
Kane knew his new Ranger teammates had whispered to him before the game and that they were coming. warm welcome when they warmed up on the other side of the ice.
“It was so cool to see the applause he got in the warm-up,” said Brassard, who was playing in his 1,000th game. “It’s going to take a while for them to get the chemistry together.”
Kane, 34, is the latest superstar to join the blueshirts in his 30s or late 20s, joining a list that includes Marc Messier, Wayne Gretzky, Pavel Bure, Eric Lindros, Jaromir Jaeger, Luc Robitaille and Phil Esposito. I was.
But on a night that was supposed to celebrate the arrival of this new Ranger, the old Ranger ruined the festivities and put a small damper on the high expectations as Blassard scored twice in the Senators’ 5-3 win over the Rangers. .
Kane seemed a little nervous or rusty at times, unable to flip the puck or corral it as deftly as he normally would. , disappointing the fans and yelling to shoot whenever there is space.
But with 446 goals and 779 assists in 1,162 games, Kane is both a scorer and a playmaker. He has more proficient stick-handling skills than anyone else in his last 16 seasons since being the No. 1 overall pick out of Chicago in 2007. He emerged as one of the best American-born players in NHL history
An impressive career so far, winning three Stanley Cup championships, the Calder Trophy as the league’s best rookie, and the Hart Trophy as the most valuable player in 2016, when he became the first American to win that award. heart trophy.
“I think our team would welcome him,” Rangers coach Gerard Galant said. “It’s a shame it didn’t work out tonight, but he’s a great addition to our group.
The Rangers acquired Kane from Chicago on a three-team deal with Arizona on Tuesday, and it didn’t cost much. Chicago acquired Andy Welinski from the minor leagues with a conditional second-round pick in 2023 and a fourth-round pick in 2025, while the Coyotes acquired a conditional third-round pick in 2025.
In return, the Rangers got a legend. After playing his entire career in Chicago, Kane was fed up with rebuilding and wanted to be a Ranger, a team that has lost in the first round of the playoffs since he last won his Cup in 2015 against Stanley. , is completely missed. Rangers look to be on the right track.
Like most teams and their supporters, the Rangers love their megastar, and some fans were already wearing Kane’s number 88 and a brand new Rangers shirt with his name on it. Jack Walsh, 30, an accountant from Albany, purchased a jersey at an NHL store in Manhattan on Wednesday.
“It’s really great to have him here,” Walsh said. “I hope it works. But you never know.”
The loss was a bit of a bummer for fans. But the deal didn’t happen overnight, and Kane left the building feeling good. Because he knew he was finally a Ranger, and that if he found chemistry with his new teammate in the coming weeks, he was likely to continue winning.
“It’s not going to happen overnight,” he said, “but we’ll find out.
he doesn’t have time Eastern His sixth-ranked Rangers in his conference still have his 20 games left in the regular season, and if anything, Kane’s loss in the first game will help Kane arrive before the NHL trade deadline. I paid a little attention to the euphoria for what I did Friday.
After the Rangers acquired Vladimir Tarasenko from the St. Louis Blues on February 9, it seemed that the trade might not come to fruition, with Tarasenko heading to New York instead.
“I wasn’t very upset about the situation when they moved for Tarasenko,” Kane said Thursday morning after a short skate. No. Now I am very happy that they made the move and that we are both here.
There is hope for Kane to reunite with Artemi Panarin, a former linemate from when he played for Chicago from 2015 to 2017. There was even a moment of cross-eye telepathy.
The Rangers, who have lost five of their last seven games, think they are in a much better position to challenge the mighty Boston Bruins of the East. Boston leads the league with his 48 wins and has won his last nine games. The teams are set to meet Saturday afternoon in Boston as the Rangers look to revive their playoff ambitions.
Kane and Tarasenko are now a big part of that ambition, making Rangers fans go wild. But trade has another side. Many Chicago fans were sad to see Kane leave. On Thursday, a handful of people showed up at the garden in red sweaters with Kane’s name and phone number on them. Among them was Melanie DiCaprio, a nurse from outside New Haven and a longtime Kane fan.
“Bittersweet,” she said. “The first time I saw him on the ice my stomach sank. Is difficult.”