Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: brad richards
I have little time for power rankings, but for those of you who are interested in such lists, Sportsnet's Luke Fox penned a list of rankings based upon NHL teams' offseason moves or the lack thereof:
1. Edmonton Oilers: Any off-season that begins with Connor McDavid should be half decent. But it's what happened before the draft (but after the lottery) — securing a bona fide GM in Peter Chiarelli and head coach in Todd McLellan — that should give the Oilers faithful the most hope. Chiarelli wasted no time addressing the team's weaknesses in net (Cam Talbot) and along the blueline (Andrej Sekera). Mark Letestu is a wise depth signing, and playing hardball with Justin Schultz shows the new-look Oilers are to be taken seriously. Also: Their new alternate sweaters look sick.
2. Dallas Stars: Trader Jim went after it again, this time landing Patrick Sharp from the Blackhawks, goalie Antti Niemi from San Jose, and inking Johnny Oduya in free agency. An already loaded offence just got scarier. “We have as good a team on paper as anybody in the league," says Tyler Seguin.
3. Buffalo Sabres: Landing franchise pivot Jack Eichel in the draft immediately puts the Sabres in the upper ranks here, but the trades for Robin Lehner and Ryan O'Reilly have instilled faith that GM Tim Murray — aggressive in pursuit of his targets even if he doesn't always land them (McDavid, Babcock) — is rebuilding the right way. Nice opportunity for Dan Bylsma to get his coaching career back on track with low expectations.
Fox continues, and if there was any doubt that these rankings are arbitrary...
20. Detroit Red Wings: Bad news: Try as they did, the Red Wings lost Mike Babcock. Good news: They had coach Jeff Blashill waiting in the, er, wings (sorry). Re-signing Gustav Nyquist for a fair price and hiring help from veterans Mike Green (too expensive at $6 million per season) and Brad Richards shows fans that the playoff aspirations won't die with Babcock's departure.
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Tags: andrej+sekera, antti+niemi, brad+richards, buffalo+sabres, cam+talbot, dallas+stars, detroit+red+wings, edmonton+oilers, jack+eichel, johnny+oduya, mike+babcock, mike+green, patrick+sharp, peter+chiarelli, robin+lehner, ryan+o'reilly, todd+mclellan
Among the Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons' Sunday notes:
Word is that Mike Babcock is pushing for [Mark] Hunter to be named general manager of the Leafs. Brendan Shanahan would be wise to look elsewhere. Shanahan needs Hunter to find players. A general manager won’t be able to spend the kind of time scouting that the Leafs require to properly rebuild. Hunter may want the job but the practicality of it doesn’t make sense...
Those who say this is the last shot for the Chicago Blackhawks aren’t really paying attention. Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Duncan Keith — the best 1-2-3 in hockey — are signed through 2023. Corey Crawford is signed until 2020. Marian Hossa is signed through 2021. Niklas Hjarmalsson is signed until 2019. So if you lose a Patrick Sharp here, a Brad Richards there and sign Johnny Oduya, Brandon Saad and Brent Seabrook to new deals, there’s no reason this kind of success can’t continue for several more years...
Two more things on Keith: 1) His cap hit is $5.5 million, making his contract one of the best in hockey. By comparison, the Dion Phaneuf contract looks ridiculous. 2) Should the Blackhawks win Saturday night, Keith may be the leading candidate to win the Conn Smythe Trophy, but he’s not a Norris Trophy finalist. For the record, he was on my ballot, ahead of both P.K. Subban and Erik Karlsson, who are up for the award.
If Steve Yzerman can juggle the salary cap prudently, the Tampa Bay Lightning will be Stanley Cup contenders for years. Steven Stamkos, Tyler Johnson, Nikita Kucherov, Ondrej Palat, Victor Hedman and Alex Killorn are all 25 and under. And figuring they pick up some assets for the disappointing Jonathan Drouin, that should make them even stronger...
When Brian Lawton tried to acquire defenceman Tomas Kaberle when he was general manager in Tampa, the Leafs first asked for college kid Alex Killorn. That conversation didn’t last long.
Simmons continues, discussing the usual potpourri of sports topics...
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Tags: alex+killorn, brad+richards, brandon+saad, brendan+shanahan, brent+seabrook, chicago+blackhawks, dion+phaneuf, duncan+keith, erik+karlsson, johnny+oduya, jonathan+toews, marian+hossa, mark+hunter, mike+babcock, nikita+kucherov, niklas+hjalmarsson, ondrej+palat, patrick+kane, pk+subban, pk+subban, steve+yzerman, steven+stamkos, tampa+bay+lightning, toronto+maple+leafs, victor+hedman
from Scott Powers of ESPN,
Blackhawks forward Brad Richards will miss the final three regular-season games due to an upper-body injury but is expected to return for the playoffs, coach Joel Quenneville said Tuesday.
Quenneville didn't reveal when or how Richards suffered the injury. Richards played 15:21 of ice time in the Blackhawks' last game against the St. Louis Blues on Sunday. He has 12 goals and 25 assists in 76 games this season.
Chicago's Kyle Baun will make his NHL debut in place of Richards against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday. Baun signed with the Blackhawks on March 26 after completing his junior season at Colgate.
The Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons can be equally acerbic and surprisingly sincere, so let's cover both areas of his writing in a short survey of his Sunday column.
Regarding the acerbic part, I hate to say it, but I most certainly agree with him here....
Free agents I wouldn’t touch: Vanek, Ales Hemsky, Dustin Penner, Brad Richards, Mike Ribeiro, Derek Roy, Lee Stempniak, David Booth ... So we’re wondering: Does Tim Thomas get a job this summer?
(Did Tim Thomas hear David Poile explain that Nashville has no state taxes on income? Red State Tour, woo!)
I understand why Jason Spezza turned down a deal to Nashville. Would hate to be a lone wolf in the Western Conference at centre and be overmanned nightly against the Kings, Ducks, Blackhawks, Sharks and Avalanche.
But I will be a little acerbic in suggesting that the damn 2nd-through-7th round NHL Draft on the NHL Network involves far too much talking over everything, and in the talking heads blathering on, they missed what was an absolutely wonderfully touching moment:
The NHL's free agent "wining and dining" period has begun, but the Minneapolis Star-Tribune's Michael Russo reports that teams interested in some of the top UFA's-to-be will be sorely disappointed if they were hoping to speak with them in Philadelphia:
Last year, when bought-out Tampa Bay Lightning center Vincent Lecavalier was seen in a New York hotel, reporters and TV stations camped out in the lobby. That’s why the agents of Vanek and Niskanen both say neither client will come to Philadelphia.
“The whole [interview period] isn’t working, at least from the player side, the way it was intended,” said agent Steve Bartlett, whose top two free agents this cycle are [Thomas] Vanek and Tampa Bay’s Ryan Callahan. “It handcuffs everybody when everybody’s sitting in Philly. The way this was envisioned was players could go into cities and see the schools, the neighborhoods, look at the facilities, go out to dinner. When someone has to make what often they feel is a pressure decision on July 1 or 2, they want to have a sense more than just what they might know from playing on a visiting team.”
It's believed that Callahan's close to re-signing with Tampa Bay...[edit: and while I was thinking out loud, I'm sure that the GM's and team officials know that these players won't be in Philly, and as such, they've probably already booked flights to the major agents' offices in Toronto, which are generally located in nondescript buildings near Lester B. Pearson International Airport]
Bartlett won’t bring any of his pending free agents to Philadelphia. Agent Don Meehan, whose agency, Newport Sports, represents pending free agents such as Jarome Iginla, Brad Richards, David Legwand and the Wild’s Matt Moulson, said he won’t either.
However, one agent who asked not to be named because he doesn’t want to create a distraction, said he might bring a “few of my lesser free agents.”
Russo continues, and while he simply says that Matt Niskanen won't be in Philadephia, either, it's intimated as his agent, Neil Sheehy, didn't comment per se [edit: Sheehy is based in the remote location of International Falls, Minnesota, so it's kind of hard to miss a GM taking a connecting flight to the border of Minnesota and Ontario at Minneapolis-St. Paul]; in his blog, Russo states that Bartlett will sell Vanek to clients based upon his body of regular-season work:
Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: brad+richards, clayton+stoner, david+legwand, don+meehan, jarome+iginla, minnesota+wild, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan, tampa+bay+lightning, thomas+vanek, vincent+lecavalier, willie+mitchell
via the New York Rangers,
“Tough last few days ... I loved being a Ranger and living in New York and playing at MSG in front of great fans. I've met many new friends, excellent teammates and staff and I have memories that I will cherish for a lifetime. Glen Sather, the management and owner, Mr. Dolan, are all class acts. I want to thank them for letting me be a part of New York life and the Rangers family. With this decision finalized, I can now look forward to starting the next chapter in my career.”
"We would like to thank Brad for everything he has done for our team on and off the ice during his time here. This was an extremely difficult decision to make because of how much respect I have for him. Brad's leadership and guidance for our young players was invaluable to the organization. We are grateful to have had the professionalism and experience he brought as an example for our team to follow. Brad has been a very good player for us and an even better person. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
Also removed "Report" from the headline.
added 12:51pm, from Capgeek...
from Ryan Dixon of Sportsnet,
A lot of people expect the New York Rangers to buy out Brad Richards, but the most emotionally invested part of Pat Morris still isn’t convinced it will happen.
Morris, the Newport Sports Management agent who represents Richards, joined the Hockey Central at Noon panel Tuesday to discuss his client’s much-talked about future. He said nothing has been settled in his talks with New York GM Glen Sather but wouldn’t rule out a return to Broadway for Richards.
“Maybe that’s my heart rather than my head [talking],” said Morris, “but with the commentary from Glen Sather, he was pretty positive about Brad’s role, especially after [former captain Ryan] Callahan left.”...
Another of Morris’s clients, Colorado Avalanche forward Ryan O’Reilly, has also been in the headlines lately.
It’s a situation worth keeping an eye on, both because of what’s already happened and what may occur in the not-too-distant future....
Morris said O’Reilly, 23, wasn’t entirely unprepared for this development, but it certainly sounds like he and his client hoped they could avoid going down this path.
“We’re now preparing for an arbitration case we didn’t think we’d have to tend to,” he said.
more on each of the players...
The New York Post's Larry Brooks was very busy on Saturday evening, pondering the fates of Brian Boyle and the Rangers' unrestricted and restricted free agents-to-be, as well as positing a thorough set of NHL notes. The main topic of his latter work may be a well-tread-upon (trodden-upon?) subject, but it bears repeating.
On July 1st, we know that Thomas Vanek will earn a boatload of money. What we don't know is how much he's going to earn, nor do we know whether his spectacularly mediocre playoff run with the Montreal Canadiens has changed NHL general managers' minds as to whether Vanek is in fact a game-breaking player, or whether he's the kind of "specialist" player who needs to be placed amidst both a strong supporting cast and a set of doing-the-hard-work-for-him linemates who must pave the way for someone who might not be the natural goal-scoring machine everyone thought he was prior to his trade to the Islanders last December.
Is Vanek worth the investment that somebody is more likely than not to put into someone who either is a game-breaker or is in fact the modern-day Ray Sheppard? Brooks isn't sure:
[There's no] evidence at all the winger is remotely worth the seven-year, $50 million deal he rejected from the Islanders before being sent to Montreal at the deadline. No evidence he is anyone’s missing piece to a playoff puzzle.
And yet, the rule of the NHL market is — or has been: Players don’t pay a price for having underperformed and teams indeed will pay the manufacturer’s sticker price, regardless.
See: Semin, Alex for a prime example. Another: Thornton, Joe.
Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: brad+richards, dan+boyle, marian+gaborik, matt+moulson, matt+niskanen, mike+cammaleri, minnesota+wild, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, paul+stastny, ryan+callahan, thomas+vanek
The New York Rangers' salary structure is quite top-heavy, so both the Rangers' beat writers and those following the team from afar have suggested that the Rangers will have to use a cap-compliance buyout on either Rick Nash or Brad Richards.
The combination of Brad Richards' resurgence under Alain Vigneault (to the tune of 51 points for his Capgeek-listed $6.67 million cap hit) and Rick Nash's struggles (39 points in 63 games and a no-show come playoff time for a cap hit of $7.8 million) have those in the know suggesting that Nash is the odd man out.
This morning, the Edmonton Journal's Jim Matheson wonders where Nash's game went given that the 6'4," 213-pound winger's become a perimeter player in the first of three "Hockey World" columns:
Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: adam+oates, alex+tanguay, antti+niemi, barry+trotz, brad+richards, colorado+avalanche, marian+hossa, new+york+rangers, paul+holmgren, philadelphia+flyers, rick+nash, ryan+miller, san+jose+sharks, scotty+bowman
The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch's in fine form as we approach the NHL's pre-Olympic roster freeze, and I think this take on the Rangers' roster situation is important to spotlight given the fact that Ryan Callahan's status is stealing the show...
All eyes are on the Rangers. Forwards Ryan Callahan, Brian Boyle, Benoit Pouliot along with defencemen Dan Girardi and Anton Stralman all become UFA’s on July 1. The troubles don’t stop there, winger Derrick Brassard is in the last year of a contract he signed while with Columbus. He’s a restricted free agent and will come up a winner at arbitration if he can’t get a deal done. All this makes the buyout of Brad Richards pretty much inevitable and it also means other players will be packing their bags. The talk is Callahan wants a seven-year deal worth $6.85 million per-season (that’s exactly what Patrice Bergeron got with Boston) and it’s doubtful the Rangers will pony up. The Blues, Wings and Kings all need help up front. Girardi could be a headache as well because he wants $6 million per-season on a long-term deal.
If the Rangers buy out Richards, his status will obviously change the UFA market's landscape considerably...
And this isn't trade-related, but it's intriguing:
“I know I can play the game. Sometimes I might have to defend myself a little bit to people who think I can’t play anymore. I’m very motivated. [Last season] kept me very hungry all summer.”
“I know Alain a little bit and really like him as a person. “I don’t know him as a coach but I’ve only heard good things about him from guys who played for him in Vancouver.
“I’m excited for this new chapter, this new voice and new view of how we’re going to play.”
-Brad Richards of the New York Rangers. More from Richards by Larry Brooks of the New York Post.
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
Richards, who struggled through the worst season of his career in the absence of training camp and a defined offseason during which he was involved in CBA negotiations, has seven years with an annual cap charge of $6.67 million remaining on his contract.
There is a sense that the Rangers would prefer not to exercise the buyout but want to retain the option in case a player becomes unexpectedly available to them leading up to July 4 and the club would thus need to free up Richards’ cap space in order to add him.
The club could defer the buyout until next summer's final amnesty period but a 2013-14 injury could complicate matters by rendering Richards ineligible for a buy-out This would thus leave the Rangers vulnerable to substantial cap-recapture penalties should the 33-year-old center opt to retire at any point before the end of the contract that runs through 2019-20.
from Steve Zipay of Blue Notes at Newsday,
If Torts was still in New York, he might have fought to keep Broadway Brad for another year, arguing that training camp and a fresh start would revitalize him. In fact, I’m not sure that he and Sather didn’t go toe-to-toe on this.
But is a presumed third-line center worth $6.7 million a season for the coming years? And an injured player cannot be bought out, so the risk, (key word, risk) in waiting until next summer is enormous…Can No. 19 survive an 82-game season when he was shaky in just 48-plus?
Plus, the Rangers do need the dough, not just to pay their RFAs now and later, but to fund Lundqvist’s extension and other players in 2014-15, even though the cap may be a eventually be little higher.
With Richards’ cap space, the Blueshirts could add free agents or execute a trade…perhaps a defenseman and a forward. Maybe a center, who is being bought out as well, will sign for far cheaper. Vinny Lecavalier, anyone? I don't know, someone like Shawn Horcoff for a year?
more (normally a paid subscription hopefully you can read it)...
from Katie Strang of ESPN New York,
The 33-year-old veteran, who has seven years remaining on a nine-year $60 million deal inked in July 2011, will be a prime candidate for a compliance buyout this summer. Richards said he has long been aware that scenario exists.
“That’s been written since probably a week into the season,” Richards said of the buyout talk. “That’s the business side of it. I’m playing hockey no matter what.”
Richards described his season as a “mess” and said it was tough to watch his team be eliminated from the post-season from the press box Saturday night. He was scratched for both Games 4 and 5 of the team’s semifinal set against the Boston Bruins, before which he was limited to only one point in 10 postseason games.
It was not a fun time. There’s no other way to really put it,” Richards said. “It’s tough, but life goes on and I’ve got to regroup and figure some things out and start over.”
Richards admitted that the lockout-shortened season was a challenge, and that he was not prepared in the same way as he would have been had it started on time.
Right to the point.
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
The center position has become a black hole for the Rangers that is threatening to swallow the team alive.
And no one, no one, has fallen deeper into that abyss than Brad Richards, who hasn’t come close to resembling the player he always has been and must be in order for the Blueshirts to salvage something from this disappointing muddle of a season.
“I don’t even have the word to describe how wearing this has been,” Richards told The Post after the Rangers’ 3-2 shootout defeat to the Capitals last night at the Garden. “Mentally, it’s been pretty tough.
“I’ve been taking a beating.”
from Dan Rosen of NHL.com,
New York Rangers center Brad Richards returned to the ice Tuesday after skipping practice Monday due to soreness, but he did not skate for long and his status for the game Tuesday night against the Philadelphia Flyers at Madison Square Garden can unofficially be labeled as questionable.
Richards did not address the media following the Rangers' morning skate and coach John Tortorella isn't expected to meet the media until 6:15 p.m. ET. The Rangers also recalled physical forward Michael Haley from the Connecticut Whale of the American Hockey League.
Richards spent Monday recovering from the illegal boarding hit he took from Buffalo Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta during Sunday's shootout win. Kaleta, who checked Richards headfirst into the left-wing boards, was suspended for five games by the NHL's Department of Player Safety.
Although he didn't miss a shift in Sunday's game, Richards said following the game that he was sore all over.
"I still don't think, if (the NHL owners') last quote is 'great offer, but you need to make another and we're not budging,' I don't know what a mediator is going to be able to do."
-Brad Richards of the New York Rangers. Much more from Ricards by Jesse Spector of The Sporting News.
from Jeff Z. Klein of the New York Times,
Brad Richards, the son of lobster fishers in Prince Edward Island, joined the Rangers just 17 months ago, but he is definitely a New Yorker now. In the days after Hurricane Sandy, he has been a frequent volunteer in hard-hit parts of the city, gutting flood-damaged homes in Queens and helping to organize a benefit hockey clinic on Staten Island.
It is work he has let others speak for, work he has not wanted treated like a celebrity photo opportunity.
On Saturday, Richards will help make a public contribution, serving as a team captain in a charity game in Atlantic City to benefit families affected by the hurricane. Called Operation Hat Trick, it will feature a star-studded lineup that includes Martin Brodeur, Henrik Lundqvist, Daniel Alfredsson and Steven Stamkos.
... they can look back at this game.
Brad Richards of the Rangers scores with 1/10th second left on the clock in regulation.
“People here put a lot more work into how they dress.”
“As a whole team, I was surprised that everyone was so well turned-out. Unlike other cities, you’re meeting people who work in fashion and are exposed to designers.”.
“The aura of Sean [Avery] pushing people in what they wear isn’t really true. He’ll toy with certain things that are a little off the wall. Everybody knows he has his own style, and everyone respects that.”
-Brad Richards of the New York Rangers. More on the fashionable Rangers from Kirsten Fleming of the NY Post.
from Joey Johnston of the Tampa Tribune,
Richards quickly became a trusted voice in the locker room. With the Rangers off to a flying start (14-5-3), Richards has 20 points (nine goals, 11 assists), second to Marian Gaborik, New York’s other big-bucks free-agent acquisition.
Life off the ice isn’t bad, either. Richards lives in Manhattan and is fascinated with exploring his new home. Richards sold his Davis Islands residence last summer.
“How do I say this? He’s a single guy in New York,’’ Lecavalier said. “Of course, he’s focused on the hockey. He’s a great leader. But living in New York is very special. It’s a great spot for him – on and off the ice.’‘
“I think this will be something to cherish my whole life,’’ Richards said. “I’m playing at Madison Square Garden. Everything is within walking distance of where you live and there’s so much available to you. During the holidays, the city will really be amazing. And we’re off to a great start, so the hockey has been going well.’‘
from Mike Sielski of the Wall Street Journal,
...But the notion that Richards will have to make some significant change to his personality or his play to adjust to New York seems a stretch at best. Yes, this is a rite of passage that every superstar athlete new to the city must undergo. CC Sabathia, Amar’e Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony, Jason Bay—they’ve all been through it. They’ve all been asked whether they can handle playing here. Sometimes—as with Bay, who has disappointed during his two-year tenure with the Mets—the player’s performance justifies those doubts.
Richards, though, appears willing to embrace those expectations, and the possibility that he might not meet them.
“He wants this challenge,” said Rangers coach John Tortorella, who also coached Richards with the Lightning. “It’s a great city. It’s a great sports town. There are different pressures coming here. There’s accountability that comes into play coming to a big market like this, but that’s why Brad Richards is Brad Richards. He wanted this, and that’s why we want him.”
Counterintuitive as it might sound, given the size of the market and of his contract, playing in New York might end up being less of a burden for Richards than playing in either western Florida or northern Texas had been.
In my last article on left wings, a few of you mentioned the positional dilemmas that we seem to face when drafting forwards. This is a great point, since not only do position eligibilities change from league to league (eg. Yahoo/ESPN/CBS), but also from year to year. As well, we also need to keep our eye on forwards with dual position eligibility.
Filed in: Fantasy Hockey and Gaming, thegoods13, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: anze+kopitar, brad+richards, eric+staal, evgeni+malkin, fantasy+hockey, henrik+sedin, ian+gooding, jonathan+toews, nicklas+backstrom, ryan+getzlaf, ryan+kesler, sidney+crosby, steven+stamkos, the+goods
What is a captain? “A person who is at the head of or in authority over others; chief; leader.” What is a hockey captain? “A locker room leader, motivator; a medium between players and upper management; a primary representative of the team both on and off the ice.”
It is a unique situation this off-season that all three New York City metro area teams will be naming a new captain for the upcoming 2011-2012 season. The New York Rangers have the most candidates and are probably in the best situation with the most quality choices to choose from. So, we will start with the Rangers and then look at the Devils, who have both the easiest and hardest choices of the three, and finally we will look at the New York Islanders who have the youngest crop of candidates with the most potential.
Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, William Morrison, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: brad+richards, brandon+dubinsky, brian+rolston, frans+nielsen, ilya+kovalchuk, john+tavares, kyle+okposo, marc+staal, mark+streit, patrick+elias, ryan+callahan, zach+parise
from James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail,
“We lost out on the Brad Richards sweepstakes for two reasons. One, we didn’t offer as much money as other teams and more importantly we didn’t structure the contract like other teams did.
“These deals that are front-loaded and have small amounts at the back end in my opinion are designed to circumvent the salary cap. I won’t do them, I never had, I’m not going to. And that’s why we were unable to sign Brad Richards.
“I wish him well. He’s a good guy. But that’s not a contract structure we’re interested in.”
a bit more...
via Darren Dreger tweet,
Deal not signed, but Richards chooses Rangers
Also via Dreger tweet,
9 years at $6.5 AaV for Richards and Rangers.
added 11:14am, via Nick Kypreoset tweet,
Front loaded money Richards should make 50M in first 5 yrs in New York
added 12:05pm via TSN’s Darren Dreger tweet,
Our numbers for Richards are slighly off. It’s 9 years at $60 million. What’s that…$6.7 aav?
via Darren Dreger tweet earlier this morning,
No guarantees, but there’s a sense Brad Richards will make his decision before noon et
If he indeed does sign by noon, many “watchers of the web” will be delighted.
From the Philadelphia Flyers site, a media Q&A with Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren tonight:
Q: What went into the Jagr signing?
“Well, obviously it sort of just started innocently yesterday. I just sent a text to Petr Svoboda, his agent, who also represents Jake Voracek, and I didn’t know who was involved. I read over the last few days it was just Detroit and Pittsburgh were the teams, so I just sent him a text about if Jaromir would have interest in playing for Philadelphia and it just kind of went from there, and culminated today with our signing of him. So we’re excited to have Jaromir. He’s going to bring a lot of leadership and we still believe he’s a guy that’s capable of putting up a fair amount of points. We’re excited to have him.”
continued… with more on Jagr and the negotiations with Brad Richards
from Rich Hammond at LAKings.com,
Members of the Kings’ front office staged a one-day invasion of Toronto with a singular mission: win over Brad Richards, the prime target in this summer’s free-agent market.
The NHL’s signing period for unrestricted free agents started at 9 a.m. Pacific time Friday, and the Kings wasted no time in making their substantial pitch to Richards—a seven-time 20-goal scorer—in the office of his agent, Pat Morris.
In a meeting that lasted more than two hours, the Kings made their offer to Richards. The presentation had a multi-media aspect as well, as the Kings showed Richards a video that included greetings from Kobe Bryant and other local athletes and celebrities.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
The first day of NHL free agency is about the rich getting richer.
For the Rangers, if not the Maple Leafs, Lightning, Kings, Flyers and Sabres, today will be about learning just how much richer the club will have to make Brad Richards in order to get the class of 2011’s lone upper-echelon center to sign on the bottom line.
If Richards is going to make his choice purely on dollars, then the Rangers are extremely unlikely to become involved in a bidding war, let alone win one.
The combination of Richards’ rewarding history with head coach John Tortorella, the Rangers’ urgent need for a blue-chip, first-line pivot and the paucity of elite centers immediately available through either free agency or the trade market, will likely prompt general manager Glen Sather to offer up to six years for up to an average of $7 million per in a dramatically front-loaded offer.
from Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun,
Will the Maple Leafs be in on the Brad Richards sweepstakes? Should they be?
It is a complicated scenario made even more vague by the fact that for all sorts of reasons, Toronto general manager Brian Burke and his management team have no interest in discussing the matter publicly in advance of the July 1 free-agency period.
The Leafs got burned, you will remember, on the foiled pursuit of the Sedin twins a couple of years ago and, to add to that frustration, were charged by the NHL with tampering because of seemingly innocent comments made by coach Ron Wilson while the Sedins were still under contract with the Canucks.
Given the fact that Richards is the standalone big-name in this year’s pool and the list of suitors has some heavy hitters, nothing can be gained by Burke tipping his hand.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
If I heard it once, I heard it a dozen times during this Entry Draft weekend in Minnesota: “[Brad] Richards told [X] he wants to come to New York.”
And this, too: “Slats [general manager Glen Sather] is going to blow his brains out to sign Richards.”
To which I respond: If Richards “wants to come to New York,” $32.5 million over five years—starting at $11 million this year to protect against a potential future rollback—should be enough money and enough of a commitment for him to achieve his dream.
And this: If Sather does indeed “blow his brains out to sign Richards,” to borrow from the vernacular, then the GM truly will have lost his mind.
from Jesse Spector of the NY Daily News,
The Blueshirts are emerging as the favorite to land the top unrestricted free agent in this summer’s class, All-Star center Brad Richards. The center, who won the Conn Smythe Trophy as MVP of the playoffs for the John Tortorella-coached 2004 Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning, has been the Rangers’ top summer target for months, and they can sign him as soon as next Friday.
Sources have told the Daily News that the Rangers plan to go all-out to get their man, who had 28 goals and 49 assists for the Dallas Stars in the final season of a five-year, $39 million contract. Nobody seems to know what Plan B is for the Rangers, and one source indicated that the reason is that they are so confident they will land Richards, they don’t need a fall-back option.
The future of Brad Richards remained unclear on Thursday when the Dallas forward declined the Stars’ request for him to waive the no-movement clause in his contract.
It’s not known which team or teams may have been enquiring about Richards, who is eligible to become an unrestricted free-agent on July 1.
“Once you taste the Stanley Cup, you want it again. Obviously, fitting in with Tampa wouldn’t be an issue because of my history here. In this salary-cap world, you have to be aware of each organization’s dynamics. Maybe you couldn’t get top dollar (in Tampa) that you might get somewhere else, but you consider other things.
“I’ve got friends and people I play golf with who constantly hammer me about coming back to Tampa. Even if I tried, I couldn’t get it out of my mind. So, yes, it’s there. I’d love to see it progress. But what’s going to happen? Who knows?’‘
-Brad Richards talking about the Tampa Bay Lightning. More from Joey Johnston of the Tampa Tribune.
from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,
I just talked to Pat Morris, the agent for Brad Richards, and while he would not say definitively that Richards would not waive his no-trade clause before the July 1 free agent deadline, he did say that Richards has to do what’s best for himself.
“I’m not aware of another player in this situation who has waived his no-trade clause, and I think there is a reason for that,’’ Morris said. “Accepting a move to another team creates an obligation, and you have to be pretty sure about that obligation. I think Brad has to do what’s best for himself and keep his options open.’‘
Richards has worked a long time to earn the no-trade clause and to earn a chance at free agency, and you can’t blame him for wanting to utilize that opportunity. He said that so much will go into his decision, and so much is based on his experience already.
With the Dallas Stars’ ownership situation not likely to be settled until later this summer, the team will not be making contract offer to Brad Richards.
Richards, who becomes an unrestricted free agent on July 1, will be playing elsewhere next season.
The Stars would be interested in trading exclusive negotiating rights with Richards before July 1, but such a move would require Richards to waive his no movement clause and there are no guarantees of that happening.
from Damien Cox of The Spin,
The Maple Leafs want to be in on the free agent bidding for Brad Richards.
If there is any.
This, obviously, could be a situation similar to that in 2009 when Brian Burke quietly journeyed to Sweden on the final day of June hoping to be able to present the Sedin twins with contract offers the next day. Vancouver GM Mike Gillis, however, beat Burke to the punch, and Daniel and Henrik stayed out west.
This time around, Burke would like to at least have a chance to negotiate with Richards, and it’s been suggested he might be willing to, if not break the bank, do some things contractually that he hasn’t be willing to do before in Toronto….
Now whether the Rangers or Kings would be willing to do more, well, we’ll see.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
Brad Richards didn’t end up on Broadway at Tuesday’s NHL trade deadline.
However, that doesn’t mean he won’t relocate there eventually.
The Dallas Stars centre didn’t want to be dealt to any other team but the Rangers before the deadline, and although he was willing to waive his no-movement clause to go to Manhattan, the two sides couldn’t find a fit.
While Stars GM Joe Nieuwendyk tried to sign Richards to a contract extension before the trade deadline, the two sides couldn’t agree on the length of the deal and never really got around to discussing money.
League sources say the Stars offered Richards a “fair market” contract, but it’s believed he and agent Pat Morris wanted a deal closer in the seven- to 10-year range.
continued plus more NHL talk…
via David Amber tweet,
Brad Richards just spoke to the media in Dallas and said he has not waived or been asked to waive his No Movement Clause
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
That Joe Nieuwendyk, GM of the Stars, who knew he had such a sense of humor?
The Post has learned Nieuwendyk told Rangers GM Glen Sather on Tuesday that it would cost the Blueshirts three young studs off the roster, believed to be Marc Staal, Brandon Dubinsky and Derek Stepan, for the privilege of renting Brad Richards.
Never mind that Richards, who has a no-move clause in his contract, has not yet been asked for a list of clubs for which he would be willing to waive it, according to agent Pat Morris in a phone conversation yesterday with The Post.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
• The free agent to-be has told an old Tampa source that he has no real interest in playing in Toronto, if he, in fact, becomes a free agent come July. Richards’ first choice is to remain in Dallas, assuming the team gets sold and can afford to sign him. His second and third choice, not necessarily in order, would be returning to Tampa (which doesn’t seem possible economically) or playing for his old coach, John Tortorella, with the New York Rangers. He has also hinted about having some interest regarding playing in Carolina.
When asked about Toronto, he apparently said nothing but shook his head.
• Hope the new Buffalo Sabres ownership will put a buck or two into the backup goaltender: The last four years, Buffalo’s backups have won just 19 of 61 starts. You invest in an upgrade in goal and you go from out of the playoffs to possible contender.
more hockey points…
Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun of ESPN discuss what to do with Brad Richards,
Burnside: the Dallas Stars lost again Wednesday night (4-2 to Calgary) and lost ground to Los Angeles and Chicago, both of whom picked up victories. The Stars once looked invincible at the top of the Pacific Division, but they are now just a single point out of ninth place.
Frankly, I don’t like their chances, and I’m sure these are difficult days for GM Joe Nieuwendyk, who arguably has the most sought after trade-deadline asset in center Brad Richards. You and I talked yesterday about how the trade market hasn’t been set for a pure rental. Richards can become an unrestricted free agent on July 1 and teams like Boston, Los Angeles, the New York Rangers and perhaps Montreal would pay through the nose for a player with Richards’ pedigree.
LeBrun: The Stars’ collapse has put Richards right back in play, in my opinion. Richards is out right now (undisclosed injury), but Nieuwendyk told me Wednesday there was hope he might be ready to return next week. As to whether the GM would possibly trade Richards, who controls his fate with a no-movement clause, Nieuwendyk was obviously careful with what he told me.
“Brad and I are on the same page,” Nieuwendyk told ESPN.com. “Our intention all along has been to sign Brad, [but] we’re leaving all our options open.”
The Bruins have interest after losing Marc Savard for the season. I think the Kings do, as well. They had considered Richards a non-option for most of the season because of the Stars’ first-place standing, but now all bets are off. Los Angeles is intrigued by Edmonton winger Ales Hemsky, but Richards would have the bigger short-term impact. The Rangers would covet Richards July 1 via free agency, but I’m not convinced they would make a play now given the assets it would take to acquire him.
more and other topics too
from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,
Reports out of the Stars practice today are that Brad Richards is not feeling well after Sunday’s game and will not accompany the team plane today in its flight to Edmonton. He is expected to miss the Tuesday game against the Oilers and then will be monitored to see if he can fly up for Wednesday’s game against Calgary or Saturday’s game against Vancouver.
Stars coach Marc Crawford would not define the injury, other than to say Richards was ``shook up,’’ on a hard hit in the neutral zone on the final shift of the game Sunday against Columbus.
from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,
If Nieuwendyk wants to deal, he’ll no doubt set his asking price around what has become the standard package in such deals: a first-round pick, a roster player, and a prospect. Steep. But remember what New Jersey rolled out last February for Ilya Kovalchuk: two roster players (Niclas Bergfors, Johnny Oduya), a prospect (Patrice Cormier), a first-round pick, and a second-round pick. The Devils also acquired Anssi Salmela and a second-round pick from Atlanta.
Chiarelli, remember, holds Toronto’s first-round pick in this June’s draft, part of the compensation for swapping free agent Phil Kessel to the Leafs. He’s got that requisite carrot, the Toronto pick or his own. He also easily could yield Blake Wheeler and Mark Stuart, who earn a combined $3.875 million. With Savard’s $4 million cap relief factored in, Richards’s $7.8 million cap hit would be accommodated, virtually to the penny. How convenient. Toss in a prospect and/or a draft pick, and the deal is there to be served, ideally in a big silver Cup.
Now nearly five years into his Causeway Street tour, Chiarelli has yet to pull off this kind of blockbuster.
from Lyle Richardson of Spector’s Hockey,
Mike Heika reports barring a total collapse which knocks the Stars out of this season’s playoff race he doesn’t see them trading Brad Richards at the trade deadline.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Which is what I’ve been saying since November. Ignore any trade rumors involving Richards, if they’re still holding down one of the top five spots in the Western Conference standings by February 28th, he’s staying put.
more trade/rumor talk…