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Bobby Ryan signs 1-year contract with Red Wings

Bobby Ryan Red Wings

OTTAWA, ON - FEBRUARY 29: Ottawa Senators Right Wing Bobby Ryan (9) before a face-off during third period National Hockey League action between the Detroit Red Wings and Ottawa Senators on February 29, 2020, at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, ON, Canada. (Photo by Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Bobby Ryan is headed to the Motor City.

The free agent forward signed a one-year deal with the Detroit Red Wings on Friday afternoon, shortly after the start of the free agent signing period.

The contract will pay him $1 million for the 2020-21 season.

Ryan was the winner of the 2019-20 Masterton Trophy after entering the NHL/NHLPA Player Assistance Program to deal with an alcohol problem. Following his treatment, he returned to the Ottawa Senators lineup and recorded a hat trick in his first game back at home. He appeared in 24 games with the Senators, scoring five goals and three assists.

This is an interesting landing spot for Ryan because it should provide him with an excellent opportunity to show he can still be a contributor, while also giving a young, rebuilding team a veteran voice to start the season. If it works out, general manager Steve Yzerman has another trade piece he can use at the deadline.

The 33-year-old Ryan has scored 254 goals in 833 games throughout his career with the Anaheim Ducks and Senators.

Along with signing Ryan, the Red Wings also signed free agent defenseman Jon Merrill to a one-year contract on Friday.

His contract will pay him $925,000 for this season.

Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.