The Chicago Blackhawks have officially sent a qualifying offer to their netminder, Antti Niemi.
With the offer deadline approaching for restricted free agents on July 1, the Hawks made the first step in retaining Antti Niemi.
While arbitration is likely, Niemi and his agent continue to look for a "cap-friendly," long-term extension.
The Chicago organization continues to search for ways to cut from the payroll. With the deadline just around the corner, the question being asked is whether or not the Hawks will seek anything for Andrew Ladd?
Ladd, a two-time Stanley Cup winner, will become a free agent should the Hawks decide not to make an offer.
Those also classified as restricted free agents are Niklas Hjalmarsson and Jordan Hendry. While Hjalmarsson waits, ESPN.com reports that the Hawks are on the verge of re-signing Hendry.