The NHL launched an investigation of San Jose Sharks star forward Evander Kane hours after social media posts from his wife alleged Kane bet on games he was involved in. Kane denied the allegations in a statement on Sunday.
“The League was made aware this evening of a post on social media alleging that San Jose Sharks Player Evander Kane bet on NHL games,” the NHL said in a statement Saturday night. “The integrity of our game is paramount and the League takes these allegations very seriously. We intend to conduct a full investigation and will have no further comment at this time.”
Earlier Saturday, Anna Kane alleged in an Instagram story removed for violating community guidelines that her estranged husband was a “compulsive gambling addict” and “he’s obviously throwing games to win money.”
“Can someone ask (NHL Commissioner) Gary Bettman how they let a player gamble on his own games? Bet and win with bookies on his own games?” Kane wrote in another post that was still live Saturday night.
Kane went public with a denial Sunday “against the advice” of his legal team.
“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,” Kane wrote. “The facts are | personally had my best season of my career last year and was the most consistent I’ve been throughout any season, I’m proud of that.”
In a bankruptcy filing earlier this year, Kane admitted to having $1.5 million in gambling debts.
“The Sharks have been in contact today with the [NHL] about the serious allegations made against Evander Kane,” the Sharks said in a statement. “We support a full, transparent investigation into the situation to maintain the integrity of the game and consistency with our team values.”
In a separate Instagram post Saturday, Anna Kane shared an email from Evander Kane that gave her instructions on how to vacate a $3 million San Jose house where they lived. A bank that financed the property was one of many creditors as part of the bankruptcy filing by Kane earlier this year.
Kane listed about $27 million in debts in the original filing and faces five lawsuits brought by creditors, according to a federal court database.
Messages left with Kane’s agent by Front Office Sports on Saturday were not immediately returned.
Kane, who turns 30 on Monday, has four seasons left on a seven-year, $49 million contract with the Sharks. Kane was originally drafted with the fourth overall pick by the Atlanta Thrashers in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.