Kings Acquire All-Star Mike Richards from Flyers
In a blockbuster trade ahead of the NHL Entry Draft beginning Friday, the Los Angeles Kings acquired All-Star center Mike Richards from the Philadelphia Flyers for forwards Wayne Simmonds, Brayden Schenn and second round draft pick. The 26-year old Flyers’ captain is a two-time 30 goal scorer and is under contract until the 2019-20 season.
Kings’ General Manager Dean Lombardi in a press release said, “We felt at this stage of the franchise it was time to make a significant move for an impact player. Mike Richards is not only one of the top players in the league, he’s also universally recognized as one of the finer leaders in the game and one of its elite competitors. Additionally, given that he’s only 26-years-old and he’s on a long-term contract, he fits our plan now and for the long-term future.”
Richards was drafted in the first round, 24th overall, in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft by the Flyers debuting in the 2005-06 season. Averaging 28 goals, 48 assists and 70 points over the last four seasons, Richards has recorded 349 points (113-216=349) and 397 penalty minutes in 453 regular season. He has also scored 36 power-play goals and 23 short-handed goals with a plus-39 rating. Also in 69 playoff games he has 50 points (16-34=50) while leading the Flyers to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2010.
Kings’ captain Dustin Brown, fresh off his winning the NHL Foundation Award in Las Vegas at the NHL Awards last night, tweeted, “Just got off plane.... Tough to see simmer go but excited to welcome a great player in @mrichie18 as the newest king!”
This trade was paved by the Flyers trying to get under the salary cap after reportedly signing goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov who has reportedly signed a nine-year $51 million deal according to Pierre LeBrun on ESPN.com.