Hall's new contract gives Evander Kane more leverage

By Chris Dubiel

As the Winnipeg Jets continue to try to work out a new contract with winger Evander Kane, the Edmonton Oilers signed Taylor Hall to a seven-year, $42 million contract on Wednesday. With the new deals that Jeff Skinner and now Hall have signed, the reported offer of six years and $29 million that the Jets offered Kane looks like it won’t be enough.

Once their new contracts kick in at the start of the 2013-14 season, Skinner and Hall will carry cap hits of $5.725 million and $6 million respectively. The contract that Winnipeg offered their star would have a cap hit of $4.83 million, a bargain for the Jets. Skinner and Hall serve as pretty good comparisons to Kane because they have each played two seasons compared to Kane’s three but have put up similar numbers and each are considered a valuable part of their respective team’s core.

Although Kane’s rookie year wasn’t as impressive as Hall’s or Skinner’s, he showed a steady growth in production in each of his following two seasons and had better numbers than both players last season. Kane is the same age as Hall and is less than one year older than Skinner, but has a full season on each player when it comes to NHL experience. Considering all these factors, no way does Evander Kane take the $29 million over six years.

Kane could even argue that he is more valuable to his team than Hall is to the Oilers or Skinner is to the Carolina Hurricanes and try to get even more money than they did. It would make for an interesting debate and I don’t think anyone would pay him more than $6 million per year, but he does warrant money in the neighborhood of what they got.

At the end of all of this, whenever Kane signs (whether it’s with Winnipeg or somebody else) he’ll be making at least $5.5 million per year. After witnessing what a division rival and fellow Canadian franchise did to lock up their young stars, the Jets will have to be aggressive to lock up theirs.

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