The Detroit Red Wings have re-signed forward Daniel Cleary to a one-year contract, the team announced Thursday.
"Super happy to be back," Cleary said. "Last year was a tough year. We had an injury riddled team. Overall disappointment."
In accordance with club policy, additional details of the deal were not disclosed, but a source familiar with the situation confirmed the contract is worth $1.5 million in base salary. Cleary can also earn another $1 million in bonuses.
"Last year he had three year offers from some teams," said general manager Ken Holland. "We said at the time we would talk at the end of the season.
"He’s worked hard in the gym, done things to get himself back. We’ll give him an opportunity on a one-year deal."
Cleary appeared in 52 games with the Red Wings last season, earning four goals and four assists. The forward’s season was cut short in January due to knee injuries.
"My knee has been bad for three years, a lot of wear and tear, like Homer had," said Cleary. "Had a rough start (last season), then a reaction to the Syn visc, got blown up and swollen and the season’s over."
Cleary said he began working with a trainer in Plymouth a week after the Wings’ season ended, which has "done wonders" for his recovery.
"I’m training hard, working hard to have a bounce back season," Cleary said.
The Wings believe he’ll be able to do just that.
"Unfortunately he had a tough year," said Holland. "He’s a guy the coaching staff likes, his teammates like. He’s a leader in the room. He can play left wing/right wing, can go on the power play.
"He’ll be good insurance. He’ll have to beat people out to be in the lineup."
Cleary was signed by the Wings as a free agent in 2005-06, and has 263 points (123 goals, 140 assis) in 592 with the organization. He has 164 goals and 221 assists in 921 career NHL regular-season games.