Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane could command salaries of $10 million a season. (Cal Sport Media via AP Images)
Chicago Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman says that the priority for the team is getting stars Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews signed to contract extensions this offseason.
The highest paid players in the NHL are Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and the Washington Capitals right winger Alex Ovechkin, who each make $9.5 million a season. Both Toews and Kane are entering the final season of five-year, $31.5 million contracts and can start negotiating with the team in July.
"It’s the highest priority for us,’’ Bowman said via the Chicago Sun-Times. "There’s no doubt that’s what we’re going to do."
Kane, 25, had 29 goals and 40 assists this season for the Blackhawks, who were eliminated in seven games in the Western Conference Finals by the Los Angeles Kings. Toews had almost identical statistics as Kane, finishing the season with 28 goals and 40 assists. Kane had 29 goals and 40 assists.
"Who could ever think of a better situation to be in?" Toews, who is the reigning Selke Trophy award winner, said. "I think back to the day that I was drafted. I had absolutely no idea all this would be in store for me in my short career so far. I've been so fortunate to be a part of an unbelievable group of guys; the majority of our team has been together since I've been here."MUIR: Top Line: Kings injury scare; Rangers believe; Simpsons-NHL logos; more