In yet another blockbuster move, captain Mike Richards is captain no more, traded to the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for forwards Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds, as well as a second-round draft pick in 2012.
“Yeah, I was…I got a call early in the afternoon from my agent. He just kinda gave me the rundown of what he knew and how everything progressed. I started hearing more and more, but I actually ended up hearing about it on the internet. At first I was shocked, and then I was excited,” said Richards of those tense minutes this afternoon as the deal went down.
The 26-year-old struck for 23 goals and 66 points in 81 regular-season games
in 2010-11, adding one goal and seven points in 11 playoff tilts. He was in
the early stages of a 12-year contract worth more than $68 million to which
the club signed him back in December of 2007.
Richards spent his entire six-year career with the organization, and was
named captain prior to the 2008-09 season. He departs Philadelphia with 133
goals, 349 points and 397 penalty minutes in 453 contests.
Richards will not be heading to unfamiliar territory. The Kings are well stocked with former Flyers players, coaches and front-office personnel.
“He was great with me back in Philly, but I mostly worked under John Stevens,” Richards said of Kings head coach Terry Murray and Stevens, who serves as an assistant. “He (Stevens) played me a lot of minutes and I had a lot of success on the power play and penalty kill.”
His best performance came in the 2010 playoffs, when he tallied seven goals
and 23 points in 23 contests as the Flyers made a surprise run to the Stanley
Cup Finals before losing to Chicago.
Simmonds recorded 14 goals and 30 points in 80 games with LA last season. Over his three-year career, all with the Kings, the 22-year-old racked up 39 goals and 93 points in 240 appearances.
Schenn, a 19-year-old native of Saskatoon and fifth-overall pick in the 2009 draft, appeared in nine games with the Kings over the last two seasons, but spent the majority of time in the Canadian juniors’ Western Hockey League.
In honor of that memorable run two Springs ago, here’s what is probably Richards’ seminal Flyers moment: