The Chicago Blackhawks Should Extend These 3 Pending Unrestricted Free Agents

Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports
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Petr Mrazek

Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

Mrazek's 3.17 goals against average and .903 save percentage seem pedestrian. His numbers lack context as Mrazek has been vital to the Hawks' chances of victory.

He has been stopping just enough shots to give the Blackhawks a chance at winning every time he is in goal. You only need to look at his most recent performance against the NHL's best team, the Winnipeg Jets. He blanked one of the best offenses for 56 minutes.

The only reason the Hawks lost was the blue line fell apart in front of him during the game's last four minutes.

The other welcomed surprise is Mrazek has avoided his traditional trip to the injured reserve. Mrazek has a case to be the team's replacement for Connor Bedard in the All-Star Game.

Think about that for a moment. The Toronto Maple Leafs gave the Hawks a first-round pick last year to take on his salary and he would return to that city to play in the All-Star Game.

His strong season might be attractive to a contending team needing goaltending help. At the same time, Arvid Soderblom's struggles this season have created a huge question on if he will ever be a No. 1 goaltender. Drew Commesso is the other goalie prospect that the Hawks have with the talent to be a top goalie. He needs another season in Rockford before he is ready to take on the NHL.

That is why Mrazek should be considered for an extension as a bridge goalie until Commesso is ready or until Soderblom proves he is the man in goal.