Breaking: NHL All-Star defenseman gets bought out by team

The veteran of 700+ NHL games will be a UFA this summer.

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In a stunning development, the New York Rangers have announced that they intend to buy out the contract of veteran defenseman Dan Girardi. 

It’s been speculated by fans and analysts for awhile now that the team would somehow rid itself of either his contract or Marc Staal’s contract this offseason either by trade or buyout, and it appears that general manager Jeff Gorton has made his decision.

Girardi seemingly knew that the decision was coming and released a statement along with the news, in which he says:

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the New York Rangers organization for giving me the opportunity to fulfill my childhood dream of playing in the National Hockey League. I am going to miss all of the friends I have made along the way, but my family and I are looking forward to the next chapter in our lives. I wish the Rangers good luck and success in the future.

It’s unclear at this point what the future holds of Girardi. At just 33 years-old he could receive another NHL offer, but there’s no way he comes close to receiving the $5.5 million annually that he earned with the Rangers. It was the defender’s 6 year, $33 million contract that ultimately did him in.