As per Larry Brooks, Wade Redden will report to Hartford to play in the AHL this season. After being waived by the Rangers on Saturday, and clearing this afternoon, Redden had several options for his future. He could report to Hartford, and honor the remaining four years of his deal ($23 million due to him). He could search for a suitable team in Europe or Russia, and have the Rangers agree to a loan, which would again see him get paid as per his contract. Or he could not report to Hartford, giving the Rangers grounds to void his contract, where Redden could seek employment from another NHL team.
At this stage of many player’s lives, family comes before hockey. With a newborn baby, it is safe to assume that Redden simply chose family this year. Hartford is close enough to New York that Redden does not need to uproot his family to continue playing hockey. It’s tough not to feel for Redden, as it was very clear he was trying, and perhaps trying too hard. It is not his fault that GM Glen Sather offered him $6.5 million per year for six years. However, hockey is a business, and for the Rangers to be competitive, Redden had to go. Maybe he can be a mentor to the kids there, like he was to Michael Del Zotto (which few knew about until MDZ spoke about Redden’s departure). At $2 million, he would be a welcome addition to most NHL clubs, just not at $6.5 million. Redden the person is a good man, but Redden the hockey players was just too expensive for minimal production.