07/08/2009 8:54 AM
Winger Kris Versteeg signed a three-year deal with the Chicago Blackhawks, it was announced on Wednesday. (courtesy of chicagoblackhawks.com)
Versteeg was fourth in scoring on the IceHogs in 2007-08
Chicago, Ill.- 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 goals, 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 Montréal 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 a goal and an assist in the game.
The Lethbridge, Alberta native spent the 2007-08 season with the Rockford IceHogs, recording 49 points (18g-31a) in 56 games. He also made his NHL debut that season, skating in his first game on Nov. 22, 2007 at Calgary. In 12 Calder Cup Playoff games in 2008, Versteeg led the team with six goals and was second with 11 points.
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 acquired by the team in a trade with the Boston Bruins on Feb. 3, 2007 for Brandon Bochenski.