Evander Kane on Jets' futility: 'Definitely frustrating to not have been in the playoffs thus far in my career'
Evander Kane likes "the big stage," he welcomes "the pressure" and he wants to play postseason hockey. So far in his NHL career though, the Atlanta Thrashers/Winnipeg Jets franchise has failed to qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. It's a fact that seems to wear on the young Jets sniper.
"I don't think anybody wants to not have any success, and not make the playoffs," Kane said during an apperance on The B-Mac and Taylor Show on the Team 1040 on Wednesday evening. "If you went around the league, I don't think you'd find anybody.
"I'm used to winning. I only enjoy winning. From a young age and all the way to the NHL, I've won almost at every level. It's ... I'm going into my sixth season. It's disappointing. Hopefully it's something I can turn around," Kane continued. "I like the big stage, I like the pressure, and the playoffs – there's no better time; it gets chippy, it gets dirty, it gets physical, it's fun. You get to score goals.
"Watching it is great, but I'd like to be in it."
The Jets roster remains largely unchanged from the 2013-14 season, a season during which they finished with 84 points and finished dead last in the improved Central Division.
While the Jets face a stiff test if they hope to end Kane's personal six-year playoff drought, he's optimistic that having coach Paul Maurice around for a full year might help.
"Paul was great when he came in," said Kane of Maurice's first half-season as the Jets' bench boss. "There was a different feel in the room. He brought a different mentality, a different intensity to the team and I think that was a good thing for us. He's a firey guy but a fair guy, and I think that passion that he brings should rub off on some of the guys."
Kane was also asked about dealing with pressure and playing in an intense market. His answer was revealing, and he gave a vote of confidence to Winnipeg – a market in which he's often seemed unhappy.
"I like the big stage. Just my personality. Whether that's a Canadian market or New York City, or L.A.. Y'know, the big stage. Y'know I love playing at MSG when I'm on the road, I've always enjoyed that, and the other big cities that kind of present the big stage where everybody is watching. It's fun to get up for those games. [...] Winnipeg definitely presents that, in that everybody has their eyes on you. So it's fun and it's something that I do enjoy."
The 23-year-old power forward is already skating and admitted that he wants "to stay (in Vancouver) as long as I can" in part to make sure he gets, "a full, good summer of training in." He also said he plans on going to Vegas to take in the upcoming Floyd Mayweather vs. Marcos Maidana II fight on Sept. 13 (five days before the opening of training camp).
Asked if he plans on leaving his phone at home – in reference to his infamous money phone tweets during the lockout – Kane laughed off the question.
"Y'know, that picture, that was tame," Kane said with a laugh. "You should've seen some of the other pictures."