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Red Wings sign Cleary: one year, $1.75 million

Sep 12, 2013, 11:21 AM EDT

Cleary Getty Images

The Dan Cleary saga is over.

Though to be fair, a whole new one might be starting.

Cleary, who has made waves throughout the past week in both Detroit and Philadelphia, has officially re-signed with the Red Wings, agreeing to a one-year, $1.75 million extension.

The deal was confirmed by Wings GM Ken Holland.

It marks the end of a crazy last few days in which Cleary turned down a professional try out to attend Detroit’s training camp, then accepted a PTO to attend Philly’s training camp — amidst reports that he’d verbally agreed to a three-year, $8.25 million deal with the Flyers as soon as the club became cap compliant.

Well, that didn’t go exactly to plan.

Cleary never reported to Philly’s camp, which came as a shock to the organization and GM Paul Holmgren.

What remains unclear is if the Flyers caught heat for potentially agreeing to a “handshake deal” with Cleary, or if the 34-year-old forward used the Philly situation as leverage to get what he wanted from Detroit.

It should be noted that, on numerous occasions, Cleary stated his desire to remain in Detroit, the place he’s called home for the last eight seasons.

As for the Red Wings, they now have a problem on their hands — 17 forwards under contract with just 14 spots available, and a payroll that exceeds the salary cap ceiling by $2.3 million, according to CapGeek.

“We have to move somebody,” Holland told “Let’s see what goes on the next three weeks. Let’s see where we’re at health-wise and the competitiveness out there.”

  1. 950003cups - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:26 AM


    • hockey412 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:53 AM


      Now they should trade him to Philly.

      • mcphillthy - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:15 PM

        Lol. Nice, dude. I wouldn’t put it past homer. After all… He did pay Jody Shelley 1.1m a season. Oh homer… Please stay sober til the season starts.

      • laxman1944 - Sep 12, 2013 at 3:52 PM

        Yep for Cotourier, Read, Giroux and a bag of pucks……lol…..

  2. polegojim - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:32 AM

    If Dan Cleary is the ‘weakest’ forward on the roster… how many other teams would like this ‘problem’?

    The Red Wings current personnel position is admirable and impressive.

    Stay tuned for Holland-like maneuvering in the very near future.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:37 AM

      admirable? They’re 2.3 over the cap with too many players. In a marketplace where teams have dumped consistent performers left and right to get under the new $64 million cap, I wouldn’t call it an admirable position. The Wings now either have to buy a player out, find a trading partner in a league where no one wants salary, or tuck a few guys away in the minors. 17 forwards is not necessarily a good problem to have when you’re paying guys like Tootoo, Samuelsson, and Bertuzzi large amounts of cash… bc they’re essentially untradeable.

      • mcphillthy - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:45 AM

        Philly you always make a lot of sense. I enjoy watching you debate and explain real life to people. Bravo man. Go flyers

      • withseidelinn - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:51 AM

        Trade Tootoo to EDM, they’re looking for a fighter apparently.

      • jimw81 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:53 AM

        where is the national media outcry about being over the cap. oops thats right red wings colors arent orange and black.

      • hockey412 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:57 AM

        I agree with everything you said. I’d also add though that Holland is one of the best GM’s in the league…the man doesn’t make moves that haven’t been carefully calculated. Certainly not just to retain the services of Dan Cleary…you know?

        I’m interested to see where it goes.

      • mcphillthy - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:03 PM

        Jim – you’re right. It’s a huge deal when Philly does it. Haters are just gonna hate. Everyone loves to hate on Philly. Lol. It’s like being booed when you play in another arena. I love it.

      • killerpgh - Sep 12, 2013 at 1:33 PM

        Buyouts can only be done between June 15th and June 30th of each year.

      • Scott - Sep 12, 2013 at 5:25 PM

        Helm will probably start the season on IR. Tootoo and Eaves probably get moved. That puts the Wings within cap and roster limits.

      • polegojim - Sep 12, 2013 at 7:04 PM

        Yes Philly and McPhilly…. admirable… because…

        Holland and the Red Wings have proven extremely capable of figuring all this out and putting a competitive team on the ice for…. oh… I guess 22 years straight, right???

        Now… since you’re Flyers fans… I could see why this all would be foreign and confusing.

        SCOTT – thank you. The Philly contingency commenting here doesn’t think that far ahead – aren’t we glad Ken Holland does???

  3. hosewater2 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:33 AM

    Phew, I’m relieved. That was a whole lot of media attention for a 3rd liner who is way past his prime. Good luck Dan!

  4. chibimike - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:37 AM

    C’mon Kenny, waste 2Mil on a forward who will be sitting on the bench the whole second half of the season and the playoffs. Much better than offering $1.75M to, oh I don’t know, Damien Brunner, who actually scored last year.

    • polegojim - Sep 12, 2013 at 7:11 PM

      Chib… wake up and read before you post that crap…

      Dan Cleary had 4 goals + 6 assists = 10 points, yes… during the playoffs… and didn’t spend time last season as a healthy scratch… which Brunner did… for good reason.

      Brunner = 9 points in the playoffs… hmmmmm Cleary out performed him then, eh?

      Not saying Cleary is ‘better’ than Brunner’s potential… but your comment about who ‘actually scored last year’ is just very very very foolish.

  5. mcphillthy - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:37 AM

    I’m glad he’s not in orange and black. I wasn’t a fan of him in Philly so I’m glad to hear he is back where he is happy. But now who does Detroit lose to make room for Cleary?

  6. twpguy1964 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:41 AM

    What a cowardly move by Cleary

  7. jimw81 - Sep 12, 2013 at 11:43 AM

    it would be classy of him if he left a voicemail to flyers about this. gutless.

    • killerpgh - Sep 12, 2013 at 1:42 PM

      Remember when Jagr (or atleast his agent) was saying that Jagr agreed to sign a deal with the Penguins, but couldn’t officially sign the deal until FA started and then Jagr ended up signing with the Flyers.

  8. elvispocomo - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Geez, not to sure what they’ll do to try and fit him in. Do they think Helm won’t be back? Can they trade Tootoo? Tatar, Andersson and Emmerton are all waiver-eligible this year so they only have Nyquist they can send down of their young players, so who else can they drop to get to 13-14 forwards?

  9. mizbinboston - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    What the… Welcome back home, Cleary?

    “Dan, we’ve figured how to work this out. Told Sammy and Tootoo they’ll have to fight to the death to make the roster. Didn’t tell them winner gets traded for a bag of pucks–to anyone. That gets rid of two. Next time you see Helmer, give him a REALLY HARD congratulatory pat on the back. That should clear up some space for at least another 3 months. We might also throw Gus back down to GR for a while because we’ve been doing that to the poor kid for the last 2-3 years and he hasn’t lost his mind yet.”

    • atoj777 - Sep 13, 2013 at 8:36 AM

      This made me laugh way more than it should have… I’m a bad person…

  10. dku5 - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:23 PM

    As many of yoiu, I have een watching the media circus go rounds with this – first it was a deal with the Flyers until we pointed out that the Flyers could not sign. Then it was a handshake deal, until Homer came out and said it was just a PTO. I don’t think anyone played or was played by either party.

    A more quiet RFA is Pietrangelo. I would like to see the Flyers make an offer once LTIR is declared. Blues will probably match whatever the Flyers offer, unless they can make a trade for rights.

    • ejbigg - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:41 PM

      Flyers aren’t anywhere near financially capable of signing Pietrangelo

      • jimw81 - Sep 12, 2013 at 1:13 PM

        flyers can easily trade mez and colburn to a team like carolina who are looking for a defenseman.

      • narfmoo12 - Sep 12, 2013 at 3:29 PM

        Flyers are $2M over the cap. Meszaros makes $4M. Pronger has a $5M cap hit. That’s $7M free to sign Pietrangelo. Also, Gervais gets waived to save another $825K. This isn’t rocket science.

  11. ejbigg - Sep 12, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    So what happens if a team is not cap compliant to start the season? I guess they could keep stashing guys in the minors and save 900K each guy, because Detroit doesn’t really have any trade options at forward. Plus, why would a team want to help them out? If I were a GM I’d let them screw themselves over, not take a contract off their hands (unless the deal were amazingly in my favor).

    • killerpgh - Sep 12, 2013 at 1:38 PM

      A team isn’t allowed to take the ice for a game if they aren’t cap compliant and find multiple millions of dollars.

  12. antmel30 - Sep 12, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    @ejbigg the flyers could actually fit petrangelo. They will put pronger on ltir and gain 4.5 then also it’s almost a certainty that coburn or mezaros are getting traded that’s another 4.5 so there is 9 mil freed up right there. I doubt they will do it. I personally think they will add a forward which brings cap back up. But it’s not impossible for flyers to sign him. Again I don’t think they will.

  13. jmcurran28 - Sep 12, 2013 at 1:29 PM

    In the end, I’m glad it’s only a one year deal. The Wings are in a perfect position to start filling up the bottom lines with talented kids like Tatar and Goose, not to mention the other young guys like Jarnkrok, Jurco, and Frk who are getting ready to have a chance in Detroit. Ultimately I have to trust in Holland and Babs knowing what’s best for the club.

    Now if we can only find who keeps shoving needles in their Darren Helm voodoo doll.

  14. canadianguest - Sep 12, 2013 at 4:39 PM

    Trade Cleary to Philadelphia
    Trade Alfredsson to Ottawa
    Trade Weiss for Filppula
    Trade Tootoo to TO

  15. edegus - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    Keith Yandle will be traded for at the end of camp. Tatar, Anderson, Quincy gone

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