Cleary has been hit on the head a few too many times if he still believes he's going to get a contract from the Red Wings for the coming season. He'd do well to sign elsewhere.
I feel obligated to repeat what Ansar Khan said: that Cleary's contract offer was almost certainly as large as was reported by St. James.
Link? Because the last thing I saw from Khan regarding Cleary's contract was the exact opposite. Has he changed his tune?
A. Nobody has said Cleary will be back, only that it's a possibility that hinges on the club's ability to shed salary. And that rumor of three years for $3 million a season is false. If that were the Red Wings' offer, Cleary would have taken it. I don't know what their offer was, but I'm told it was closer to $2 million a year for the first two seasons and less than that for the third year.
Cleary had a somewhat down regular season though a very good playoffs, but with a glut of forwards to sign and the cap going down, I find it hard to believe that Holland offered a 34 year old, injury prone Dan Cleary the top end of what he's ever been paid as a Wing. If that were true Holland is as big of fool as Cleary would be for turning it down because Cleary's role and production certainly wouldn't be going up the next three years on the Wings.
Being over the roster limit and neck deep in forwards, you can rest easy. Cleary isn't coming back. Unless Holland swings some big trade and that better be to bring in a big name player, not make room for Cleary.