Ken Holland’s never been one to hesitate when the opportunity to add a Stanley Cup-hungry veteran for a cheap price presented itself. Recently, he’s done so with Dallas Drake and Mike Modano, two cases that ended in different levels of success.
Chris Drury could be Holland’s next veteran get. The Rangers plan to buy out Drury, the New York Post reported, meaning the New York captain will be a free agent — and one that’s already going to earn $3.35 million over the next two seasons.
That’s the type of scenario Holland loves to swoop in on. Drury’s buyout means that he might not be looking for much financially, but he could be hungry for another run at a ring — Drury won the Cup with Colorado in 2000-01.
With Modano out of Detroit’s plans (and pondering retirement) and Kris Draper maybe following the same path, the Red Wings could use some forward depth on the big-league club. Drury wouldn’t help them add much in the way of team speed, but aside from this past season, in which he played just 24 games due to injury, the 34-year-old winger has scored 20 goals nine times.
He’s definitely lost a step from his younger days — even in playing 77 games in 2009-10, Drury managed just 32 points.
He is a smart, respected player, though, who is strong defensively. Those are all qualities that Holland and Wings head coach Mike Babcock have shown a desire to have around.
Detroit could definitely use another top-six scorer, which might require them to move Jiri Hudler somewhere, and Drury’s addition wouldn’t do anything to aid that quest. What he might do is bring another hard-working forward into the locker room. It wouldn’t be the step to get the Wings over the top, but a Drury signing feels right in line with Holland’s track record to keep Detroit in the Cup hunt.