The Chicago Blackhawks signed a pair of restricted free agents to new contracts on Friday morning, agreeing to terms on one-year deals with defenseman Caleb Jones and Philipp Kurashev.
Welcome back Caleb and Philipp pic.twitter.com/7wr5uGpZai— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) August 12, 2022
Jones’ deal is worth $1,350,000 while Kurashev’s contract is for $750,000.
Jones, who turned 25 in June, came to the Blackhawks in a July 12, 2021 trade with the Edmonton Oilers that sent Duncan Keith out of town and reunited Jones with his brother, Seth, on Chicago’s blue line. In 51 games last season, Caleb Jones had 15 points (5 G, 10 A) in 51 games while averaging 16:43 of ice time. Originally a fourth-round pick (117th overall) of the Oilers in the 2015 NHL Draft, Jones has played in 144 NHL games across four seasons.
Kuashev, 22, struggled a bit in his sophomore season, tallying just 21 points (6 G, 15 A) in 67 games while averaging 12:51 of ice time per game. After scoring 16 points (8 G, 8 A) in 54 games of his rookie season, Kurashev didn’t quite take the step forward that many in and around the organization were hoping to see. But the 2018 fourth-round pick (120th overall) will certainly get another chance to do so in the 2022-23 season.
Kurashev has a bit more wiggle room given his age, but both he and Jones seem to have a similar objective for the upcoming season: prove that they should be considered as part of the Blackhawks’ long-term plans.