Daniel Michael Thomas Cleary ( born December 18, 1978 in Carbonear, Newfoundland ) is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward who currently plays for the Detroit Red Wings in the National Hockey League.
Daniel Cleary began his career in 1994 in the Canadian Junior Football League OHL where he played for the Belleville Bulls. In his first season he was able to convince and scored 81 points in 62 games. The following year he was able to increase and came to 115 points. He was chosen for its good performance in the First All-Star Team of the OHL. 1996/97 he left, however, after a bit, but he was selected by the Chicago Blackhawks in the very first round of the NHL Entry Draft in 1997 at position 13.
Cleary was right at the start of the 1997/98 season his debut in the National Hockey League, but was sent back to the OHL after six games again. There were still four games for the Indianapolis Ice, a farm team of the Blackhawks in the International Hockey League.
In the 1998/99 season he played 35 games for the Blackhawks in the NHL, but also came to inserts for their farm team in the American Hockey League, the Portland Pirates before he was transferred in March 1999 to the Edmonton Oilers. He played the rest of the season in the AHL with the Hamilton Bulldogs.
1999/2000 he came only to isolated inserts for the Oilers. Instead, he could put his skills in the AHL under proof. In 58 games, he managed 74 points and was elected to the Second All-Star Team in the AHL. Over the next three years, but he was then fixed to the cadres of the Edmonton Oilers. In 2003 he paid his contract and the team parted from Cleary. He then wrote for the Phoenix Coyotes for which he contested the 2003/04 season.
Because of the lockout and the resulting cancellation of the NHL season 2004/ 05 joined Cleary in the Swedish Elitserien for Mora IK. Upon his return to America he was without a contract, but was able to prevail in the training camp of the Detroit Red Wings and played the 2005/06 season mainly in their third or fourth row.
In the summer of 2006, he received from the Red Wings a new contract for two years. Cleary was able to convince immediately and played his best season as he scored 20 goals and another 20 could prepare. He also went with the Red Wings in the playoffs to the finals of the Western Conference a.
In the 2007 /08 season Cleary followed up on the good performances of the previous year and was able to set his personal best of 40 points scorers already on the 56th season game, but he broke in the next game the jaw and fell six weeks long. After his return in late March 2008, he was able to strengthen his personal record in the remaining games to 42 points. In the following Playoffs him ever became the first native Newfoundland winning the Stanley Cup.
Cleary will be mainly used in shorthanded situations, he also played in Detroit for several years with Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby in the Checking Line.
Awards and achievements
Represented Canada at:
- World Cup 2002