TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. – The Detroit Red Wings agreed to a $1.75 million, one-year contract with veteran forward Daniel Cleary on Thursday, retaining a key player on the opening day of training camp.
Cleary, a 34-year-old unrestricted free agent, returns for a ninth season with the Red Wings and 15th in the NHL. The Newfoundland native has 119 goals and 146 assists over 540 regular-season games with Detroit.
Last season, Cleary was one of four Wings to skate in all 48 regular-season games. He had nine goals and six assists and was second on the club with 10 points in 14 post-season games.
The 6-foot, 208-pound winger also has played for Chicago, Edmonton and Phoenix. A former first-round pick of the Blackhawks, Cleary won the Stanley Cup with Detroit in 2008.
Cleary, who has 377 career points, was a free agent last summer. He didn’t get the long-term deal he was seeking from the Red Wings or another team, and settled for a one-year deal to stay in Detroit.
“It’s not a rumour; it’s a reality,” said Red Wings forward Tomas Tatar, who could be one of several players facing their release as Detroit tries to get under the salary cap.