Detroit Red Wings sign Bobby Ryan, Jon Merrill to one-year deals: NHL free agent tracker

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Steve Yzerman continues the trend of low risk measures to improve the Detroit Red Wings.
Shortly after the free agency started on Friday lunchtime, he signed a one-year deal worth $ 1 million with Bobby Ryan. Ryan, 6-foot-2 and 208 pounds, is a former 20-goal scorer who still has the skills to step up the Detroit Red Wings offensive badly. Ryan last played for the Ottawa Senators.
Yzerman then signed defense attorney Jon Merrill for a year for $ 925,000.
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In 833 career games between the Senators and Anaheim Ducks, which moved Ryan to second overall in 2005, Ryan has 254 goals and 301 assists.
Detroit Red Wings goalkeeper Jimmy Howard (35) saves a distraction by Ottawa Senators right wing Bobby Ryan (9) in the first half at Little Caesars Arena.
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Ryan can go straight to the top 6 and play in the second row with Robby Fabbri and Valtteri Filppula or FIlip Zadina. He's an offensive veteran with the right shot trying to get a foothold in the NHL at the age of 33.
Ryan was limited to 24 games in 2019-20 and spent approximately three months participating in an NHL alcohol abuse relief program. Ryan returned to the Senators roster on February 25, and recorded a hat trick one game later. Last month the Professional Hockey Writers Association recognized him with the End of Season Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy for perseverance and dedication to hockey.
He was bought up by the senators in late September, making him a free agent.
The 28-year-old Merrill has played 356 games between the New Jersey Devils and Vegas Golden Knights, scoring 12 goals and 49 assists. As a 6-3, 195 pounder shooting to the left, he adds depth to the blueline. He played three seasons in Michigan after being drafted in the 2010 second round by New Jersey, and helped the Wolverines advance to the 2011 NCAA championship game.
The steps fit in with how Yzerman has handled the free hand since he took command of the wings in April 2019 and committed veterans to short-term deals. He signed striker Valtteri Filppula and defender Patrik Nemeth for two years in 2019.
Contact Helene St. James at hstjames@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more about the Detroit Red Wings and subscribe to our Red Wings newsletter. Her book The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings will be published by Triumph Books on October 13th. To order, go to Amazon or Barnes & Noble.
This article originally appeared in the Detroit Free Press: Detroit Red Wings Bobby Ryan and Jon Merrill Sign One-Year Contracts

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