Maltby Signs

From the Free Press:

Ultimately, Kirk Maltby opted to take his chances with the Wings and stay close to home.

He agreed Wednesday to a one-year, two-way deal, extending the relationship begun when he arrived in Detroit in March 1996. A two-way deal allows the Wings to send him to the minors – the most likely scenario – while he retains the chance that he’ll be called back up should reason arise.

The contract is worth $525,000 if he plays in Detroit, $105,000 if he plays in Grand Rapids.

So there you have it…loyalty wins again.

“I think any player in the league, whether it’s a 15-year veteran or a two-year veteran or a rookie, everyone would love to have a one-way.  But it’s the nature of the beast; it’s a business as much as it’s a sport, and the Wings are no exception.”


Welcome back, Kirk.  And according to the Freep, Maltby can be sent up and down from the big club without having to pass through waivers.  There’s been speculation that it’s different for players or 35…but that doesn’t appear to be the case.

Like I said before – Maltby, should he start the season with Grand Rapids Griffins, would provide wonderful leadership and experiential knowledge to youth movement going on in Hockeytown West.  Kids like Tomas Tatar and Brendan Smith could learn a lot from a guy like Maltby, who is completely family oriented and has never (to my knowledge) had any off ice issues involving the law.

“I want to at least get to camp and see how things go and that.  I wasn’t happy with having to finish my year last year short, with surgery and that. I wanted to at least be able to train through the summer and get something done and get ready for Traverse City.”

But Maltby took one for the team last season and had his surgery when Andreas Lilja was ready to come back.  Now Lilja is gone and Maltby is signed.  Maltby showed loyalty to the team and got signed.  Lilja showed loyalty to his agent and doesn’t have a job.

All is right with the world.