Patrick Kane on Rangers debut: ‘Pretty cool expertise’

NEW YORK — New York Rangers followers roared each time Patrick Kane appeared on the video board. They cheered when he was introduced within the beginning lineup. They gasped when he would stickhandle by means of the Ottawa Senators’ protection.

Kane appreciated these reactions on Thursday evening at Madison Square Garden, making his Rangers debut after they acquired him from the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday. He mentioned he simply needs the outcomes might have been completely different, for himself and the group in its 5-3 loss to the Senators.

“My first game as a Ranger was a pretty cool experience. Obviously, I would’ve liked to play a little bit better and come out with the win. But hopefully it’ll come. I haven’t played in a little bit. Maybe a little bit rusty,” Kane mentioned.

It was Kane’s first sport since Feb. 22, when he left a Blackhawks highway journey in preparation for a commerce to the Rangers, for whom he waived his no-movement clause. He performed 16 years and gained three Stanley Cups in Chicago, arriving in New York with a wave of expectations and hype. Retail shops inside MSG had offered out of adult-sized Kane jerseys almost an hour earlier than puck drop.

The 34-year-old star winger did not tally some extent in 19:36 of ice time. He took 4 photographs on aim and was on the ice for 3 Ottawa targets. Perhaps probably the most obvious instance of his rust and inexperience together with his new teammates was on the facility play, the place Kane performed 5:58 of the Rangers’ 11 minutes with the person benefit. They went 0-for-4, together with a five-minute main energy play within the first interval.

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“They haven’t given me too much. Just telling me to go out there and play. It’ll be nice to settle in and play a little bit better for my teammates,” mentioned Kane, who mentioned his nerves disappeared rapidly as soon as the sport began.

Kane famous that the Rangers have a “pretty big game” Saturday towards the Boston Bruins (1 p.m. ET, ABC) however then have 4 days off earlier than their subsequent sport. He’s hoping to make use of that point to raised acclimate himself to the group and his teammates.

That contains his former Blackhawks teammate Artemi Panarin, who starred with Kane from 2015 to ’17. The two had been reunited on the identical line towards the Senators and noticed time on the facility play collectively. Kane mentioned earlier than the sport that it’d take some time to rekindle the magic he had with Panarin in Chicago.

“You try to remember your roots and everything. It’s a chemistry we had six or seven years ago. I don’t think that’s going to happen overnight, but we’ll find it,” Kane mentioned.

Panarin and Kane had been the final two Rangers gamers in warmups. During his time with the Blackhawks, Kane was famously superstitious about being the final participant to go away the ice. But with the Rangers, it is Panarin who ritualistically leaves the ice final.

After the 2 stayed on the market for some time collectively, Kane relented and skated off the ice second to final. Panarin exited quickly after.

“Yeah, it’s his team,” Kane mentioned with amusing. “We’ll let him have that honor.”

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Kane handed a puck to his 2-year-old son, who was being held by his associate, Amanda Grahovec, and gave him a fist-bump as he left the ice. While it wasn’t a memorable evening for the Rangers, will probably be one Kane by no means forgets.

“It’s a special place to play. It’s an Original Six franchise. Playing in MSG and you get a reception like that? It’s something I’ll never forget,” he mentioned.