Kubalik will remain a restricted free agent when his new deal expires with the Blackhawks in 2022.

The Chicago Blackhawks re-signed forward Dominik Kubalik and goaltender Malcolm Subban to two-year contracts right as the free-agent window opened at 11 am (CT) on Friday morning. Kubalik’s contract carries a team-friendly cap hit of $3.7 million over the next two years, while Subban will cost the Blackhawks just $850,000.

Kubalik led all NHL rookies in goals with 30 and finished third in Calder Trophy voting for the 2019-20 season. The former NLA MVP also finished seventh in the league in both even-strength goals (26) and shooting percentage (19.1%).

Kubalik’s two-year contract extension works well for the Blackhawks, as they will still hold his rights once his new deal expires in 2022. The 25-year-old Czech winger pushed for a longer deal, but the Hawks’ front office likely wanted to keep Kubalik as a restricted free agent going forward.

“Obviously we wanted to stay in Chicago and stay there for longer. Both sides should be happy so that was my first goal,” Kubalik said. “I’m happy, hopefully, Chicago’s happy too.”

The two-year bridge deal also gives Kubalik the opportunity to cash in for a bigger contract if he can continue to be an effective goal scorer in the next couple of seasons. The Pilzen, Czech Republic, native knows the expectations are only going to go up following such a dominant rookie campaign.

“The first goal right now is to show that it wasn’t just one season. Just keep going, keep getting better,” said Kubalik. “Everybody is going to expect that I’m going to score 30 goals. I would take it, but you never know what’s going to happen.”

As for Subban, he was not tendered a qualifying offer by the Blackhawks, despite GM Stan Bowman stating the team would like to bring him back during a press conference on Thursday. Well, the Blackhawks did not give Subban a qualifying offer because that would have cost them $892,500 annually. Instead, the two sides agreed upon a two-year extension worth $850,000 per season. Every dollar counts.

Subban will likely head into the 2020-21 season in a competition for the Blackhawks No. 1 goaltender position. Collin Delia and Kevin Lankinen will also be in the mix, but Subban has prior NHL experience the other two lack. Although, the 26-year-old netminder is coming off a struggle-filled 2019-20 season in which he posted a mere .890 save percentage. Subban only saw 71 seconds of action with the Blackhawks after being acquired from the Vegas Golden Knights as part of the Robin Lehner trade.

“My goal right now is to get as many starts as I can get. In the past, I’ve definitely got into a groove when I’ve played more games and strung together some games,” Subban said. “But that’s got to be earned. I’m looking forward to the opportunity to earn those starts.”

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Born and raised in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. Diehard Blackhawks and Cubs fan. Former high school baseball player. Studied Mass Media Communication and Psychology at the University of Missouri.