One of the top items on the to-do list for Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen is getting leading scorer Ryan Johansen to sign a new contract.

Johansen, who led the Blue Jackets with 33 goals and 63 points in 82 games in 2013-14, will become a restricted free agent if not signed by noon ET on Tuesday, the start of free agency.

The Columbus Dispatch reported Monday the Blue Jackets took the first step toward retaining Johansen's rights by extending him a qualifying offer. Doing so allows Columbus to match any offer Johansen accepts from another team.

"If he signs an offer sheet, he signs an offer sheet," Kekalainen told the newspaper June 12. "Our ownership is strong, and as I said before, we would match any offer he could possibly sign. If somebody wants to waste their time and effort on that, that's fine for them. We'd just match it and keep the player."