Embattled San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane suspended 21 games by NHL for 'established violation' of COVID-19 protocol

Evander Kane, a San Jose Sharks forward, has been suspended by the NHL for 21 games without pay. This is due to an "established violation" under the NHL/NHLPA COVID-19 protocol.
Sources earlier this month confirmed that Kane was under investigation for submitting a false COVID-19 vaccination card (incorrectly) to the NHL and Sharks. The NHLPA and NHL do not have a mandate to vaccine players for the 2021-22 season. However, they have far fewer restrictions than unvaccinated players. They can play in Canada without any mandatory quarantine.

According to the NHL Kane was suspended because of "an established violation of the NHL/NHLPA COVID-19 Protocol, and lack thereof." According to the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the money Kane will forfeit goes towards the Players' Emergency Assistance Fond.

Kane released a statement by the NHLPA saying that he would like to apologize to his teammates, the San Jose Sharks team, and all Sharks fans who violated the NHL COVID protocols. "I made a mistake that I regret deeply and for which I take full responsibility. To help me make better future decisions, I will continue counseling during my suspension. After my suspension ends, I will return to hockey with great effort, determination and love for the game.

In a divorce filing, the NHL also investigated allegations of domestic abuse made against Kane's estranged wife Anna Kane. The NHL announced the suspension of 21 games, saying that it could not support the concurrent investigation into domestic abuse allegations made against Kane, his estranged spouse, Deanna.

Kane's turbulent year on the ice continues with this suspension. Anna Kane accused him of betting on NHL games. Kane also claimed that he was betting on Sharks games. Kane said that he deliberately sought to influence the outcome for his own benefit. Kane was cleared by the NHL after it investigated and found no evidence that Kane had ever bet on hockey.

The NHL informed our team that Evander Kane was suspended without pay for 21 games due to an established violation and lack of compliance with the NHL/NHLPA COVID-19 protocol. This statement was made Monday by the team. We are encouraged by Evander’s determination to move forward, but we are very disappointed by his disregard of the NHLPA and NHLPA's safety and health protocols. We won't comment further on Evander's situation before the NHL's mandated suspension.

Kane was not able to attend Sharks training camp, and has yet appear in a Sharks game this season. Kane will be eligible to play in the San Jose game against the New Jersey Devils on Nov. 30.

This is Kane’s fifth NHL suspension. Kane was suspended for two games in 2014 for an illegal hit in Winnipeg; one for violating team rules in Buffalo Sabres 2018; one playoff for illegal check in 2019 while playing with Sharks; three games in 2019 for abuse of officials with Sharks; and three for elbowing in 2020.