Griffins sign veteran Cleary for 2016-17

Photo: Sam Iannamico

The Grand Rapids Griffins on Friday signed veteran forward Daniel Cleary to a one-year contract.

During his first season with the Griffins in 2015-16 — and first in the American Hockey League since 1999-2000 — Cleary played in 35 games for Grand Rapids and contributed 15 points (three goals, 12 assists). The 37-year-old skated in all nine of the team’s Calder Cup Playoff games.

Over the course of his 19-year professional career, Cleary has played in 938 NHL games and 1,121 pro contests, including stints in the AHL, IHL and Swedish Elite League.

A first-round draft pick by the Chicago Blackhawks in 1997, the 6-foot-1, 205-pound winger has accumulated 387 points (165 goals, 222 assists) and 492 penalty minutes in the NHL between the Blackhawks, Edmonton Oilers, Phoenix (Arizona) Coyotes and Detroit Red Wings. Cleary has also totaled 52 points (24 goals, 28 assists) in 121 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

Signed as a free agent by Detroit in 2005, the native of Carbonear, N.L., helped the Red Wings capture the franchise’s 11th Stanley Cup in 2008.