The Chicago Blackhawks agreed to eight-year contract extensions worth $84 million with forwards Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane, the team announced on Wednesday. The two agreed to the maximum length under the new collective bargaining agreement and their contracts will run through the 2022-2023 season.
The pair were reportedly seeking to be paid $12 million annually in their new deal, but Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune reports the new deal will pay each of them $10.5 million anually that will make them the highest paid players in the NHL.
“I could not be more grateful for the amazing moments and opportunities I’ve been given by the Chicago. There’s no organization in sports that cares more about the overall experience of their fans and the success of their players.”
Toews, 26, and Kane, 25, agreed to identical five-year deals on the same day in 2009 and the two players who represent the face of the organization and came to the NHL at the same time, continue to have their careers linked closely to one another.
Patrick Kane: “I look forward to many more years of success with the #Blackhawks.”
— Chris Kuc (@ChrisKuc) July 9, 2014
Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said at the end of the season that extending the pair of Conn Smythe winners was the “highest priority” and now he has scratched off his biggest offseason task.
Toews was the third overall selection in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft and Kane the No. 1 pick in the 2007 pick and were vital components in the renaissance of the franchise that has won two of the last five Stanley Cups.
Toews, the Blackhawks captain, has 195 goals and 245 assists in 484 career-regular season games while Kane has 178 goals and 315 assists in 515 career regular-season games.
With today’s contract extensions, the two who arrived in Chicago at the same time very well could play their entire careers with the Blackhawks.