Oilers face new injury concern ahead of Stanley Cup Final

The Oilers seem to be relatively healthy ahead of their matchup with the Panthers, save for an injury Evander Kane sustained in Sunday's game versus the Stars.
Dallas Stars v Edmonton Oilers - Game Six
Dallas Stars v Edmonton Oilers - Game Six / Leila Devlin/GettyImages

It's fair to claim this has been an extremely eventful season for Evander Kane, probably his most eventful since he joined the Edmonton Oilers. He's been in the headlines for a number of reasons, including comments made during interviews, perceived heated exchanges with teammates, and apparent discipline disguised as a maintenance day.

As such, it almost stands to reason that Kane would be in the news ahead of the Stanley Cup Final, albeit this time for something that he has no control over. (Although to be fair, all the above examples are ones which were blown out of proportion.) More specifically, regarding an injury he sustained during Sunday night's series-clinching 2-1 win versus the Dallas Stars.

As per Sportsnet, the 32-year-old injured himself during the first period, as a result of a hit on Stars blue-liner Alex Petrovic. He had to go to the locker room and although he did return, he significantly finished with just 4:39 of ice time, including no action during the third period.

Understandably this leads to some concern about if Kane will be available for the Stanley Cup Final, although Oilers coach Kris Knoblauch did his best to sound positive. Speaking to the media, he said: "Yes it was obviously injury-related (why he only saw limited action). Fortunately we've got this week before we play on Saturday. And we're optimistic he'll be playing on Saturday."

With no clarity on what the actual injury is it would be extremely easy to speculate, but we won't. All we will do, is note is that the 2009 fourth overall draft pick has been dealing with a sports hernia all season, something which he confirmed towards the end of April.

Obviously the hope for Oiler fans is that there is nothing seriously wrong with Kane. No matter what people may think of him -- and he is indeed a polarising figure -- he's an important part of the roster.

In this respect, the Vancouver native has produced the most points of his three seasons in Edmonton, albeit having also played his most games but still impressive, particularly when considering his sports hernia. When the Oilers were struggling early on in the regular season, he was one of the few individuals playing well and producing.

Next. Oilers still have one more mountain to climb. Oilers still have one more mountain to climb. dark

Ultimately, the Oilers are a better team when Kane is playing. And given his mental fortitude, you know he will do everything within his power to be ready for when the puck drops at 6 pm M.T. on Saturday at Amerant Bank Arena, in Florida.

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