I've been pumping this guy's tires ever since he was drafted but he hasn't got a lot of recognition until recently. Well it's time to start paying closer attention... Evander Kane is an absolute stud.
First off, just a few notes/stats:
T-2nd EV Goals with 8 (behind only Stamkos) and T-1st on Team
T-5th in EV Points with 16 (behind Patty Kane, Hodgson, Crosby, Vanek, and Stamkos) and 1st on Team
1st in EV SOG
Spends 41.67% of his shifts alongside Burmistrov (7 points) and Antropov (8 points) and 20.17% of his shifts alongside Jokinen (6 points) and Antropov (8 points)
18 points in 19 games, and has only gone without a point in 3 games this season
...and only has two points on the powerplay.
His equivalency based on age throughout his career (WHL and NHL) has been unreal - I won't get into it as I believe HPG did an in-depth explanation at some point.
Let's compare his linemates to those ahead of him in EV:
Evander (16 EV Points) vs. Antropov (6 EV points) + Burmistrov (7 EV points)
= +3 points vs. combined linemates
Patty Kane (16 EV Points) vs. Sharp (9 EV points) + Bolland (6 EV points)
= -1 points vs. combined linemates
Hodgson (17 EV Points) vs. Vanek (18 EV points) + Pominville (11 EV points)
= -12 points vs. combined linemates
Vanek (18 EV Points) vs. Hodgson (17 EV points) + Pominville (11 EV points)
= -10 points vs. combined linemates
Crosby (18 EV Points) vs. Kunitz (14 EV points) + Dupuis (11 EV points)
= -7 points vs. combined linemates
Stamkos (20 EV Points) vs. Purcell (13 EV points) + Conacher (14 EV points)
= -7 points vs. combined linemates
Aside from Hodgson and Evander, all these players also have at least 8 PPP (P Kane - 8, Crosby - 12, Stamkos - 10, for an average of 10) and sit top 6 in league scoring. All these teams also have a PP in the top half of the league while Winnipeg sits at 22nd. Now this is a stretch, but if you put Evander on an equivalent PP (and thus an equivalent # of PPP) he would jump to 3rd in NHL scoring, behind only Crosby and Stamkos.
Now, let's look at his year to year progression (82-game extrapolation):
09-10 (18 yo): 17 goals, 15 assists, 32 points
10-11 (19 yo): 21 goals, 27 assists, 48 points
11-12 (20 yo): 33 goals, 30 assists, 63 points
12-13 (21 yo): 39 goals, 39 assists, 78 points
I'd like to take a brief moment to compare this to Jarome Iginla who has 11 consecutive 30+ goal seasons, is 35th all-time in goals scored, one of only 3 active 500+ goal scorers (Jagr, Selanne being the other two), two-time Rocket Richard Winner, and Art Ross winner. Yea, that's a pretty damn high bar.
In his draft year, Iginla put up 33 goals, 38 assists, 71 points in 72 games to go along with 111 PIM. Kane put up 48 goals, 48 assists, 96 points in 61 games to go along with 89 PIM, only 10 goals shy of Stamkos' totals in the OHL in the same GP (57 goals, 57 assists, 114 points in 72 games pro-rated). Everyone else in the top 10 WHL goal scorers that year was at least a year older than Evander.
Iginla didn't make the NHL until he was 19 and put up almost identical numbers to Evander's 19 year old season (pro-rated) - 21/27/48 vs 21/29/50.
Iginla didn't have his first 30 goal season until he was 23; Evander's first was as a 20 year old.
It's too early to make direct comparables as there's not enough data yet.... but what I'm saying is Evander Kane has shown a number of things:
1) He's an elite EV player, despite terrible linemates - easily the worst set of linemates of the top 5 EV scorers, and that includes Dupuis/Kunitz.
2) Based on a few seasons of stats, he's projecting to be on a level with one of the best goal scorers of all time in Jarome Iginla.
3) He's top 25 in league scoring despite having (significantly) fewer powerplay points than every other player in the top 25.
...and to boot, he's one of the best multi-cat players around. Last year he posted 53 PIM, 173 hits, 31 blocks, 4 game winners, and 287 shots on goal. This year he's on pace to surpass all those numbers in an 82 game season.
A lot of guys peg him as a 70+ point player, but everything he's done to date in his career has shown he has 90+ upside.