The 25-year-old signed a two-year AHL contract with Bakersfield in March 2020. He started this past season with Frederikshavn in Denmark, where he scored three points (one goal, two assists) in 14 games. He returned to the United States and scored one goal in six AHL games.
Folkes (5-foot-8, 176 pounds) scored 103 points (48 goals, 55 assists) in 137 games from 2016-2020 at Penn State. The two-time Big Ten all-tournament team member (2017, 2019) played his final three seasons at Penn State with Blackhawks prospect and IceHogs forward Evan Barratt.
The move comes after the Blackhawks traded defenseman Duncan Keith and AHL forward Tim Söderlund to Edmonton for defenseman Caleb Jones and a conditional third-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. Söderlund, a 2017 fourth-round pick, scored eight points (one goal, seven assists) in 52 games the past two seasons for Rockford.