Winnipeg players, Kane reluctant to talk about history
For Kane, it's 'just another game' on Sunday
The Winnipeg Jets are reluctant to talk about its history with Evander Kane leading up to their game against the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday.
"It's just like any other game, any other teammate that's been traded. It's business," said Dustin Byfuglien, who said he and the rest of the team won't notice whether fans are wearing track suits at the game.
Jets fans are getting creative about welcoming Kane back to Winnipeg, campaigning online to encourage people to wear track suits to Sunday's game at the MTS Centre using the hashtag #TrackSuitNight.
The campaign is a reference to the track suit Kane wore to the arena about a week before he was shipped off, a violation of the club's dress code.
"What the fans do, the fans do," Byfuglien said.
Jets coach Paul Maurice acknowledged energy will be high at Sunday's game but, he said, it will be business as usual.
'There will be … a little bit of buzz probably," he said.
"Everyone above the ice surface will be excited and then the puck will drop and the game will get played."
Mathieu Perreault approached the topic of Kane with more of a sense of humour than the rest of the team.
''It will be fun," he said of #TrackSuitNight.
"If they could try to get in his head and to disturb him during the game, good for us. It should be fun to watch."
Kane has 'no reaction'
Kane talked to a string of reporters on Saturday, saying he has "no reaction" to #TrackSuitNight.
He summarized his time in Winnipeg as a case of the wrong fit; something that could be fixed with a change of scenery.
"I have good memories here playing for this team and some of the seasons we had and now I've moved on to Buffalo and that's where my focus is," he said.
"I really don't think too much about Winnipeg at all and I'm enjoying my life in Buffalo now."
He did not, however, back down on the comments he made to U.S.-based blog site Barstool Sports, where he said if he had the opportunity to fight anyone in the NHL, it would be Andrew Ladd or Blake Wheeler.
"I don't really regret anything I've said or done," he told reporters, adding they were free to interpret the statement as they wished when asked whether the comments were a joke or if he was serious when he made them.
Overall, Kane said he wasn't thinking of the game in Winnipeg differently than he thinks about other times on the ice.
"It's just another game," he said.