The Chicago Blackhawks have agreed to terms with left wing and 2009 Calder Trophy Finalist Kris Versteeg on a three-year contract.
“Kris’ tremendous rookie season was a big reason the team was able to go as far as it did,” Blackhawks General Manager Dale Tallon said. “He is part of a core of young players that is going to make this franchise successful for a long time.”
Versteeg, 23, was named to the National Hockey League’s All-Rookie Team after leading league first-year pros with 31 assists while ranking second with 53 points and fourth with 22 goals in 78 regular-season games with the Blackhawks. The Lethbridge, Alberta, native led Chicago and finished third in the NHL with seven short-handed points, which included four short-handed markers, tying a franchise record by a rookie. His 53 points finished fourth on the club while his goals placed fifth. Versteeg led NHL rookies and shared third on Chicago with eight assists and 12 points in 17 contests during his Stanley Cup Playoff debut.
Versteeg was named to the 2009 NHL YoungStars Game at the All-Star Game in Montreal but did not participate due to injury. He recorded the first-ever goal at Wrigley Field when he dented the net 3:24 into NHL Winter Classic 2009 on Jan. 1 against Detroit, finishing with two points (G, A) in the tilt. Versteeg has appeared in 91 regular-season matchups with the Blackhawks over the last two seasons, tallying 57 points (24G, 33A) and 61 penalty minutes. He was originally acquired by the team in a trade with the Boston Bruins on Feb. 3, 2007, in exchange for Brandon Bochenski.