San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane is being investigated by the NHL after his wife, Anna, alleged that he bet on NHL games.
Anna Kane made the allegations in late July through a series of posts on her Instagram stories. Among other things, she accused Evander of betting on his own games and intentionally trying to lose in order to profit.
The NHL said that it hopes to have its investigation of Evander Kane done by training camp which begins in September. The league also said that it will not punish Kane without any additional evidence.
Anna Kane’s allegations and Evander’s response
Anna Kane’s list of grievances with her husband Evander began with a lengthy post on her Instagram stories in which she accused Evander of abandoning her and the couple’s one-year-old daughter to go on a vacation in Europe.
The pregnant Anna then explained that, during this time, the bank came to take the family’s house. She had to pack the family’s belongings and handle it alone.
Shortly after came her allegation that Evander bet on his own games.
“How does the NHL let a compulsive gambling addict still play when he’s obviously throwing games to win money? Hmm maybe someone needs to address this.”
She finished in one final Instagram story by tagging the NHL’s Instagram account and criticizing NHL commissioner Gary Bettman for letting Evander’s gambling happen.
Evander Kane was quick to respond the following morning to the accusations made by his wife and put out a statement on Twitter to refute Anna’s claims.
“I have NEVER gambled/bet on Hockey, NEVER gambled/bet on a Sharks game, NEVER gambled/bet on any of my games and NEVER thrown a hockey game.”
Evander called the allegations “completely false” and referred to Anna as his “estranged wife and soon to be ex-wife.” He further explained that the couple is in the midst of getting a divorce and called Anna “mentally unwell.”
He also elaborated on Anna’s claims relating to his abandonment of the family:
“I love my daughter. I will and always have taken care of my daughter in every way possible.”
Evander concluded by saying that he would cooperate with the NHL’s investigation and that he looks forward to playing in the upcoming NHL season.
Kane’s previous financial issues
This incident isn’t the first financial issue Kane has had recently.
In 2019, the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas sued Kane over $500,000 in gambling debts he accrued during his time in the city while playing the Vegas Golden Knights in a playoff series. The casino dropped the suit, however, in April 2020.
Earlier this year, Kane filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, citing $27 million in debts, $1.5 million of which were due to gambling debts.
There are six active lawsuits tied to Kane’s bankruptcy, one of which was filed in May by Professional Bank. The bank is a lender that is seeking over $15 million after it claims that Kane defrauded the company while trying to get a loan of $1.5 million.
This all comes during Kane’s third year of a seven-year, $49 million contract that he signed with the Sharks. According to Capfriendly, a website that tracks players’ salaries, he has earned nearly $56 million during his career.
What is next for Evander Kane?
Despite his recent shaky past, there is no tangible proof Kane bet on his own games. The NHL’s investigation will surely be thorough.
If Kane is found guilty, the NHL will have to set a precedent for punishing his actions. The league has never dealt with a situation like this regarding a player intentionally losing games.
MLB’s Pete Rose was infamously banned for life by the league after he bet on his own games, though he claimed that he only bet on his team to win, not to lose.
Regardless, this is a story that both gambling and sports enthusiasts should watch closely, and it could result in a landmark decision by the NHL that has a ripple effect for decades to come.