The Chicago Blackhawks have signed both Jordin Tootoo and Michal Rozsival to one-year extensions. Signing both players through 2017-18 will help to fulfill the forward and defense requirements (Roszival actually needs three more games) for the Blackhawks in the upcoming expansion draft. The team will need to expose another forward who fulfills the 40/70 requirement and is signed through next year. Marcus Kruger currently fills that, though they may want to protect him in the draft. Pierre LeBrun of ESPN reports that the deals are worth $700K for Tootoo and $650K for Rozsival.
Both players signed one-year deals with the Blackhawks this summer and have played bit parts in the Blackhawks latest run for the Stanley Cup. Combined, they’ve collected two points but do provide bodies for the team to move in and out of the lineup when necessary. For a team like the Hawks that operate right up against the cap, cheap veterans that can fill in are key to icing a competitive lineup every night.
Like the signing of Jeff Glass last week, this is a move simply to prepare Chicago for any eventual scenario at the expansion draft. With teams unsure exactly of what strategy the Vegas Golden Knights will use, having more players that can fill expansion requirements is a good thing.