BUFFALO, N.Y. — Chicago Blackhawks star Patrick Kane has hired an attorney and called off a public display of the Stanley Cup on Saturday because he is under police investigation over something that may have happened at his home last weekend.
Without providing details, lawyer Paul Cambria confirmed in a text message to The Associated Press that he has been hired to represent Kane. Cambria represented Kane in 2009, when he pleaded guilty to a noncriminal charge of disorderly conduct after being accused of assaulting a Buffalo cab driver over 20 cents.
Cambria is a high-profile attorney who specializes in First Amendment issues. He has represented Hustler publisher Larry Flynt and music artists Marilyn Manson and DMX.
The developments come a day after Hamburg police confirmed Kane is under investigation for an "incident that allegedly occurred" at the player’s off-season home in suburban Buffalo. Hamburg Police Chief Gregory Wickett did not discuss the nature of the investigation. He said police are gathering information and awaiting forensic tests.
In the meantime, Blackhawks spokesman Brandon Faber said Kane would spend the day with the Stanley Cup in Buffalo, but would do so with in private with his family and friends. That’s a switch after Kane paraded the trophy around his hometown the previous two times he helped the Blackhawks win the title in 2010 and ’13.
Kane cancelled a night-time private party scheduled to be hold at a popular rooftop bar in downtown Buffalo.
Just after 5 p.m., bar staff loaded bags of buns and numerous large tin bins of food into the back of a pickup truck and transported them to Kane’s home where the party took place instead. The pickup truck was allowed in through the front gates, and numerous cars were spotted parked on the lawn of the recently built home on the shore of Lake Erie.
A neighbour said someone posted a few signs — one of which she said read: "I wouldn’t kiss the Cup" — across the street from Kane’s home. Those signs, however, were taken down by evening, and only their taped remnants remained.
Other events were cancelled altogether once the police investigation became public Thursday.
Tentative plans called for Kane to bring the Cup to Buffalo Women’s and Children’s Hospital for what was supposed to be a private visit. He was also scheduled to bring the trophy to his favourite pizza place not far from where he grew up in south Buffalo.
Though there was no sign of Kane, some fans were still hoping he might pop up with the Cup at some of his familiar spots.
A handful of youngsters in Blackhawks shirts and hats camped out in front of pizza restaurant, where autographed Kane jerseys hang on the walls and a Blackhawks’ flag flew from a pole in the parking lot. Three off-duty Buffalo police officers were patrolling the parking lot before leaving early in the afternoon.
In Hamburg, several cars slowed or stopped to peek into the front yard of Kane’s home overlooking Lake Erie. A police officer was parked in a black and white SUV across the street.
Kane, who wears No. 88, picked Saturday to host the Cup because it is the eighth day of the eighth month.
Also Saturday, Chicago coach Joel Quenneville attended Blackhawks Day at Arlington Park, but was not made available to the media. Quenneville signed autographs for about an hour.
There were several Kane jerseys and shirts in the crowd at the racetrack, and fans stopped throughout the day to have their picture taken in front of a Kane banner at the facility.