Hawks, Emery negotiating new contract

Ray Emery was a vital member of the Hawks during their regular-season success. AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

The Chicago Blackhawks and goaltender Ray Emery are negotiating a new contract, Emery's agent said Tuesday.

Emery is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 5 after spending the last two seasons with the Blackhawks. He made $1.15 million on a one-year deal in 2012-13.

The 30-year-old Emery and goaltender Corey Crawford shared the William M. Jennings Trophy this past season; the award is given to the goaltenders on the team with the fewest goals allowed during the regular season. Emery was 17-1-0 with a 1.94 GAA and a .922 save percentage in the regular season, but he did not play in the playoffs.

Emery said last week he is interested in returning to the Blackhawks.

"I'd love to stay here," Emery said Thursday. "See how that works out with what Chicago has in mind and see how the cards kind of play, but definitely would like to stay here."

The Blackhawks recently signed 24-year-old Finnish goaltender Antti Raanta to a one-year contract. Raanta had a 21-10-11 record with five shutouts, a 1.85 goals-against average and a .943 save percentage in Finland this past season.

Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said last week that Raanta's signing has nothing to do with whether Emery returns next season.

"No, they don't necessarily play into each other," Bowman said Thursday. "I think we looked at signing [Raanta] as a move for the future. He's a young guy. He's 24 years old and hopefully he can adjust to North America quickly. Sometimes that takes a little bit of time, so we're not trying to rush him into anything. You know, obviously hockey is hockey, but the size of the rink is smaller over here, the style of play is a little bit different, so as a goaltender that can take some time. So we want to allow for that transition, and if it happens quickly, that's great. But they're not necessarily related to one another."

Crawford is signed through the 2013-14 season.