A decadelong relationship between the Detroit Red Wings and Luke Glendening has come to an end, as the grinder has signed with the Dallas Stars.
The deal makes sense from the Stars’ point of view: General manager Jim Nill was with the Wings when Glendening came into the organization in 2012-13. Nill left in 2013 to take over the Stars.
Glendening’s deal is for two years with a $1.5 million annual average value.
Letting Glendening go shows Wings general manager Steve Yzerman’s focus on improving the team offensively. Glendening was a good defensive player and good in the faceoff circle, but limited offensively. He had 24 points in 114 games over the past two seasons.
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Yzerman signed forward Sam Gagner and defenseman Marc Staal before they hit free agency, which began at noon Wednesday. Over the past two weeks, Yzerman also shored up the Wings by trading for defenseman Nick Leddy and goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic.
Glendening, 32, joined the Wings organization after four years at Michigan, where he went from walk-on to captain. He made his NHL debut in 2013-14, appearing in 56 games. Glendening quickly became a coach’s favorite — first, with Mike Babcock, then with Jeff Blashill. Glendening fit in well as a grinder-type forward, using his speed and tenacity to shadow top opposing forwards and kill penalties.
Over time, Glendening became a wiz in the faceoff circle. He was second in the NHL with a 60.9% this season among players who had taken at least 800 draws.
Glendening was named an alternate captain in 2019.
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