Per Larry Brooks, the Rangers are not in on Patrick Kane this season. Brooks is noting that the Rangers were never in on Kane, despite some prior unsubstantiated rumors. It just seemed that people threw the Rangers in the rumor mill despite the lack of cap space and a roster spot for Kane.
Kane’s time on Broadway wasn’t that magical, given the disappointing first round exit. Even though Kane was a solid producer, he was a step slow and you could tell his hip was an issue. This is the same injury that appears to have ended Nicklas Backstrom’s career, and while Kane is not Backstrom, there was no need to force a reunion when there was no fit and there’s a known injury concern.
Scoring from the RW spot has been a bit of a challenge thus far for the Rangers. Blake Wheeler and Kaapo Kakko are off to slow starts from a score sheet perspective, even if they are showing to be solid play drivers. Kakko has been the victim of some poor on-ice SH% (3.5% to a career average of 7.5%), so eventually that should change.
Remember, people were all over Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider until last week. Sometimes, guys just start slow. The Rangers are 11-2-1 despite this RW scoring issue. There’s no reason to force a lineup shuffle right now when there are other cheaper and perhaps better paths to success.