Patrick Kane said Friday he was "pretty emotional" and "a little disappointed" when he was told the Chicago Blackhawks traded linemate Artemi Panarin to the Columbus Blue Jackets.
"I think I'd be sitting here lying to you if [I didn't say] my first reaction was pretty emotional," the Chicago forward told "Hockey Central" on Sportsnet. "A little bit of disappointment too, because obviously we had that chemistry the past couple years."
Kane and Panarin combined for 346 points in two seasons together with the Blackhawks. Kane led the League with an NHL career-high 106 points (46 goals, 60 assists) two seasons back, when Panarin won the Calder Trophy as NHL rookie of the year. But Chicago has failed to advance past the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs after winning the Stanley Cup in 2015.
"It's too bad we didn't have that success in the playoffs to even build on that even more," Kane said. "But as time goes on, you understand the trade, and obviously we get a [heck] of a player back in Brandon Saad, and he's going to bring a lot to our lineup as well."
Panarin, who was signed by Chicago as a free agent from the Kontinental Hockey League, was traded to Columbus with forward Tyler Motte on June 23 for former Blackhawks forward Saad and goalie Anton Forsberg.
Video: Jackets & Hawks swap forwards
Kane, a 28-year-old right wing, and Panarin, a 25-year-old left wing, were the top point-producing pair in the NHL the past two seasons. They each had a point on 46 Blackhawks goals this season, and on 56 the prior season.
"Me and Artemi are very close, I mean, not only on the ice but off the ice as well," Kane said. "We like to kind of goof around with each other and I think he's a great kid. I think he's going to have a great future. And, you know, sad to see him go, no doubt, I think, especially with the chemistry we had."