Blackhawks Re-Sign Panik and Kempny
Las Vegas resident Thomas Jurbala is an experienced real estate developer who earned a master of business administration degree from Loyola Marymount University. Though he resides in Las Vegas, Jurbala is an avid fan of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Chicago Blackhawks.
Despite losing in the first round of the NHL playoffs, the Blackhawks had a successful regular season, finishing first in its division with 109 points. In May, the team re-signed a pair of players that had a substantial role in its regular season success. Richard Panik, who recorded a career highs in goals (22) and assists (22), was signed to a two-year extension worth $2.8 million per season. A native of Slovakia, the 26 year old previously played for the Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs. He recorded just eight points in 30 games for the Blackhawks in 2015–16, but broke out offensively last season.
At the end of the month, the team re-signed Czech Republic defender Michal Kempny to a one-year extension worth $900,000. While his impact on the team’s success was less than that of Panik’s, his return to Chicago signals a potential shift in how the team might structure its defense heading into next season. The Blackhawks’ lack of mobility on the blue line was exposed in its first-round playoff loss to the Nashville Predators, while Kempny, one of its best skaters, was a healthy scratch in three of four games.