NEW YORK — The Rangers are buying out the final two seasons of defenseman Wade Redden's contract.
The Rangers made the move Thursday, one day after placing Redden, 35, on waivers. Now he is an unrestricted free agent.
Initially, the Rangers planned to have Redden sit out the season so they could buy out him out over the summer and he would avoid an injury. (Injured players cannot be bought out.)
But the union and league reached an agreement that allows teams to buy out contracts before the start of this season instead of having to wait until the end of it as mandated by the new labor deal.
Redden has spent the past two seasons with Connecticut of the AHL after notching five goals and 35 assists in 156 regular-season games with the Rangers over two seasons. That came after he signed a six-year, $39 million deal to leave the Senators.
Redden will earn a prorated portion of the $3.341 million he is owed for this season plus two-thirds of the $5 million he was set to earn next season. Redden's $6.5 million annual salary cap hit still will be charged to New York this season but not for 2013-14.
Canadiens: Center Scott Gomez will be bought out, espn.com reported. Last week, Montreal told Gomez to sit out the season to avoid injury. But the deal that allows the Rangers to buy out Redden will apply to Gomez. His $7,357,143 cap hit will count for this season but not next. He has just 21 goals in three seasons since being acquired from the Rangers.
Stars: Mike Modano, who led the team to a Stanley Cup in 1998-99, was hired as an adviser. He retired after last season.