Red Wings sign Cleary: one year, $1.75 million


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.”

Oilers get Kronwall’d – in more ways than one

Niklas Kronwall
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When someone gets clobbered by Niklas Kronwall, they get Kronwall’d.

(His detractors may insist that the definition require the words “dirty” or “illegal,” but that’s a debate for another day.)

It’s easy to get lost in those thunderous hits and forget that the  Swedish defenseman also brings some skill to the table.

He made a big impact – literally and figuratively – in Detroit’s 4-3 overtime win against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday.

First, the Kronwalling:

Next, Kronwall’s overtime-winner:

It hasn’t always been pretty, but the Red Wings are leaning on guys like Kronwall and Dylan Larkin to stick with it.

Tonight’s win extends their point streak to six games (4-0-2), with five of those contests going to overtime.

Dubinsky – Crosby’s nemesis – gets the last laugh on Friday

Sidney Crosby, Brandon Dubinsky

Brandon Dubinsky isn’t a household name like Sidney Crosby is, yet for all the hype that Crosby vs. Alex Ovechkin gets, Dubinsky is the sort of guy who truly rankles No. 87.

It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.

To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:

The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)

That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:

They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.

Even Dubinsky kind of sort of admits that he may have been in the wrong.


More and more, the Blue Jackets are looking like a nuisance … possibly one that will grind their way to an unlikely playoff berth. They improved to 8-4-0 in November after a disastrous 2-10-0 October.

In other words, there’s at least a chance that we may see these increasingly bitter rivals butt heads in another playoff series.

Eichel’s sweet snipe helps Sabres snap six-game skid

Jack Eichel
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The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.

You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.

That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:

Call this a healthy reminder that Eichel has the ability to change games, something Buffalo fans hope to get used to.

Report: Likely no suspension for Matt Beleskey’s hit on Derek Stepan


Alain Vigneault went there in comparing Matt Beleskey‘s hit on Derek Stepan to the notorious check Aaron Rome delivered on Nathan Horton many moons ago, but the league seems to disagree.

While Rome sat through that memorable Stanley Cup Final between Boston and Vancouver, it sounds like Beleskey won’t face any further discipline, according to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun.

In the unlikely event that anything changes, PHT will make note.

The next game between the Rangers and Bruins takes place at Madison Square Garden on Jan. 11. Will these bad feelings linger?