The Anaheim Ducks have signed forward Ryan Strome to a five-year deal worth $25 million.
Strome is coming off a two-year deal with a $4.5 million annual average value (AAV). He signed the contract with the New York Rangers, the team he spent the past four seasons with. The 29-year-old centre has also suited up for the New York Islanders and the Edmonton Oilers.
Strome put up 21 goals and 54 points in 74 games this past season in the Big Apple. He also scored nine points in 19 playoff games to help the Rangers reach the Eastern Conference Final. In 263 regular season games with New York, he collected 71 goals and 195 points while averaging just over 18 minutes of ice-time.
A Reliable Two-Way Centre
Strome has proven himself to be a capable top-six centre, developing strong chemistry with the likes of Artemi Panarin and Alexis Lafrenière during his time with the Rangers. He’s a pass-first player who served as an assistant captain in New York.
Drafted fifth overall by the Islanders in 2011, Strome may not have tapped into the full potential that made him a Top 5 draft pick eleven years ago, but he has still developed into a very good player who is in high demand across the league. He brings a lot to the table, including some strong stickhandling skills and a refined offensive game. He has also only posted negative possession numbers in two of his nine seasons in the NHL.
Strome’s younger brother, Dylan, another top-six centre, also hit the free agency market this summer after he wasn’t tendered a qualifying offer by the Chicago Blackhawks. Meanwhile, 23-year-old Matthew made completed the trio of Strome brother free agents when he wasn’t qualified by the Philadelphia Flyers either.
How Strome Will Fit In
Strome is the second former Ranger to sign in Anaheim on the first day of free agency after the Ducks picked up forward Frank Vatrano earlier on Monday.
Related: 2022 NHL Free Agent Signing Tracker
He will add great depth down the middle, slotting in the no. 2 spot behind Trevor Zegras. He’ll add versatility to the lineup and will be able to play in all situations, helping to take pressure off of the Ducks’ young superstar. He’ll also help make up for the loss of long-time captain Ryan Getzlaf who retired at the end of the season after a tremendous career. The Ducks are undergoing a transformation under new general manager Pat Verbeek and Strome will be an important piece in the roster retool going forward.
Melissa has been covering the Montreal Canadiens for The Hockey Writers since March of 2020. She is also THW’s Social Media & Marketing Manager as well as co-host of Chicks & Sticks, a weekly show produced by THW. In 2006, she spearheaded the social media initiatives for Tennis Canada and Rogers Cup and was the primary person responsible for their upkeep for over 10 years. She has written articles for multiple tennis websites and interviewed the likes of Roger Federer and Serena Williams. While her career in sports started in tennis, her first love has always been hockey. She has a journalism degree from Concordia University.