Patrick Kane has been removed from the cover of NHL 16. In an official statement on Twitter, it was confirmed that the Chicago Blackhawks star will no longer feature as a spokesperson for EA’s upcoming hockey title.
The news follows in the wake of the ongoing scandal in which Patrick Kane has been accused of rape. The original NHL 16 cover was set to include an image of Patrick celebrating with his teammate Jonathan Toews after winning the Stanley Cup back in June. The new cover was unveiled following the statement, which features Jonathan Toews parading around the ice by himself, hoisting Lord Stanley’s Cup in the air.
It’s a move which many will have expected from EA, who will be eager to distance themselves from the whole saga. Funnily enough, the original cover came under scrutiny from a fairly large majority of the fan community (including ourselves), with many considering it to be a bizarre design choice, but the replacement is much superior.
In terms of the game itself, the public EASHL beta recently gave players a taste of what to expect when NHL 16 drops next month. The beta’s closing date was actually extended multiple times, and players have been enjoying the opportunity to get their hands on EASHL again.
Despite the cover change, the game is still on schedule. NHL 16 will be available for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on September 15, 2015, with toned down versions (entitled “Legacy Edition”) also coming out for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on the same day.