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The Pittsburgh Penguins and Brad Richards, the Perfect Match – Pittsburgh Penguins – PenguinPoop Blog

The Pittsburgh Penguins and Brad Richards, the Perfect Match

With Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin out, you may think the Penguins GM Ray Shero should waive the white flag and live to fight another day. I’m willing  to bet there is a locker room full of Penguins that would not agree with this sentiment. I also believe Shero still has a few cards left up his sleeve.

For the right price, just about any player in the league could be had before Trade Deadline. Ray Shero has never been a GM to throw caution to the wind and this year because of the uncertainties with the Penguins lineup leading up to the NHL Trade Deadline, Shero will most likely be even more cautious. 

That all being said, there is one player out there that could be had by the Penguins without mortgaging the future.  This player would make the Penguins once again the frontrunner to win the Cup. The Dallas Stars center Brad Richards.  Richards is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season would not only be the perfect fit for the Penguins, it would also be the perfect fit for Brad Richards. That is if he is healthy (more on that later).

Everyone knows Brad Richards will be an unrestricted free agent next season and will be looking for a big contract. Right now he’s making about $7.8 million a year, and Dallas who is quickly falling out of reach of a playoff spot may be willing to dump Brad Richards for a prospect or two and maybe some draft picks.

The problem for Dallas and what is good for the Penguins is that Brad Richards has a no-trade clause in his contract.

This no trade clause will allow Richards to pick which team he goes to, and with it being a contract year, Richards is going to want to play for true contender. That and the fact that he is huge competitor. He holds the record for most game winning goals in a playoff year, an amazing seven. 

The Pens have a few names that will be coming back in the next few weeks, Kunitz, Cooke, Asham and Letestu. If Brad Richard were to play for the Penguins and Sidney Crosby was to return for the playoff season, the only difference between these Penguins and the Penguins that had the overall best record in the NHL a couple months ago would be that instead of Conn Smythe winner Evgeni Malkin you would have Conn Smythe winner Brad Richards.  Plus throw in a recently returned from injury Jordan Staal and you once again have the makings of a Stanley Cup team.

Right now there are rumors swirling around the NHL that Brad Richards will be going to just about every team except the Penguins. This is not much unlike a few years ago when the Penguins weren’t even mentioned as being in the running for the best player available, Marian Hossa. That was right up until Ray Shero landed him at the trade deadline and brought him to the Penguins.

Who’s in the running for Richards?  

It is highly unlikely that he would give up his no -trade clause to go to any team not in contention for the playoffs. This would take care of everyone’s front runner for getting Richards in the off season Toronto. Any team that does not have salary cap space and is not willing to trade someone big can be written off also. 

This would remove all most all other teams, save one. The NY Rangers. The Rangers have expressed interest in possibly offering up Marion Gaborik to anyone interested. Richards might be interested in playing again under the coach he won the cup with and Dallas may be interested sticking yet another dagger into the hearts of Minnesota fans. This in my opinion would be the Penguins only obstacle.  That and one other little Hitch.

There always seems to be a “Hitch in the get-a-long” doesn’t there. 

The other night while playing Columbus, Brad Richards took a hit to the jaw. He played the rest of the game, but felt woozy afterwards and there has been rumor he may be experiencing concussion like symptoms. Dallas Coach Marc Crawford said “Nobody wants to say the word, but he’s got concussion-like symptoms, and we’re being real careful. He’s doing his baseline testing, I think, today...”  He is not on there current road trip.

That all being said, Ray Shero has the cap space to make a move as soon as he sees fit due to long term injuries to both Crosby and Malkin.   Richards would grab some huge headlines coming to Crosby’s team and would get to show he still deserves a big money contract this summer.   A perfect match.

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18 Comments

  1. Jag.off's Gravatar Jag.off
    February 22, 2011 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    After listening to sheros interview yesterday I got the feeling he was originally inquiring with the stars a few days ago about someone other than Neal. I wonder if it was Richards?

  2. February 20, 2011 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    I believe brad Richards would be great addition to pittsburgh’s lineup. Jordan staal and Tyler Kennedy have been hot lately and Sid possibly coming back in march! Not to mention Kris letang this team could take it all the way!

  3. Le Magnifique's Gravatar Le Magnifique
    February 20, 2011 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    You do realize that at no point in your article did you even suggest what the Penguins would have to give up for Richards. I don’t see any way that Dallas settles for a prospect and a draft pick. Don’t forget about the LA Kings getting in on the action. They have more cap room than the Penguins or the Rangers and are only 5 points out of the #3 spot in the West. As for his concussion, ther is now talk that he’ll be back in the line up for Dallas on Tuesday.

    Long Live Mario!!!!!!!

    • Penguin871's Gravatar Penguin871
      February 20, 2011 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      The Kings do not have more cap room (because of LTIR) and would have to give up substantial player. Someone or a combination of players that make around $4 million. Something I doubt the Kings would do for a rental. If the Kings did offer that, I’m not sure Dallas would want him going to a conference rival. If you are getting your info from CapGeek, I think they have completely gone off their rocker with their latest deadline cap update and are a bit confused how the cap works. You can tell in their explaining of it, that and the fact they have the Islanders with a $69 million Max Cap Hit.

      If the Pens went after Richards, they would be using Crosby’s LTIR money originally, and then on March 4th Malkin’s LTIR will kick in and be retroactive back until February . The LTIR actually raises a team salary cap above the cap. If the Pens picked up Richards, Crosby would most likely not be available to the Pens until March 4th, not that he will be any way.

      • Le Magnifique's Gravatar Le Magnifique
        February 20, 2011 at 11:04 am | Permalink

        Not even sure what a Cap Geek is, but I’m pretty sure LA could always just send Michael Handzus down to the minors to free up whatever additional room they would need besides what they have and the salary relief they get from Willie Mitchell
        missing two months of the season.

        Dallas can’t rally concern themselves with where he will be going if they fall out of the playoff race. He will be a free agent at the end of the season, and he will be able to sign with whatever team he wants to

        • Penguin871's Gravatar Penguin871
          February 20, 2011 at 11:17 am | Permalink

          Sending Handzus and his 8 goals down would do it. I don’t beleive him to be on a two way deal so he would have to clear waivers.

          You asked what the Pens would give up, what would the Kings give up? The 2 things in the Pens favor are: 1) I’m sure Dallas doesn’t want Richards going to a conference rival that could retain his services next season. 2) If Richards goes to the Pens as a rental player, the Pens can’t sign him next year. Dallas would save the salary get a prospect and picks and be able to pick Richards back up after June 30th. Just like the Pens did Mark Recchi.

          • Le Magnifique's Gravatar Le Magnifique
            February 20, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

            It’s not like anyone would claim Handzus and his 8 goals on waivers, and what’s to stop Richards from signing with LA in he off season even if he does come to the Penguins as a rental?

            As for what does LA have to offer? How about Brayden Schenn, Oscar Moeller, Thomas Hickey, Andrei Loktionov, Johann Franson, Jake Muzzin or even Erik Ersberg if Dallas wants a back up goalie.

  4. BRS's Gravatar BRS
    February 19, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

    They would have to be sure he’s healthy. Didn’t Richards break his hand playing Columbus last year? He needs to stop playing them.

  5. Mhatter's Gravatar Mhatter
    February 19, 2011 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    pipe dream!

  6. Jash's Gravatar Jash
    February 19, 2011 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    I think that Crosby, Staal and crew could make a run for the cup without a trade. the callups have been filling in great. By the same token Richards and Staal could make a run of it. If we can get richards for next to nothin.

    All three together with a team of proven playoff winners and having Fleury in top shape would be a no brainer. Heck these guys are winning without any big names.

    Staal has already matched Crosby’s game winning goal total this year with 3 just one behind gogo.

    • Mike legacy's Gravatar Mike legacy
      February 20, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      You can’t just look at jordan staal’s GWG total and say that he is picking up all the slack, Jordan Staal is playing his game, he might have elevated a little bit, but to me it’s barely noticeable. Staalsy is a great player, I just don’t think he can make up for the offense we’ve lost. Sterling, Jeffery, Conner and Wallace have been stepping up beautifully. You can really see how Wilkes-barre is tops in the AHL. they play the same system as the big boys and it really shows…

  7. Johnny Nez's Gravatar Johnny Nez
    February 19, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    Problem is, what do you give up for Richards? Price is going to start with Eric Tangradi & PIT #1. And that’s probably not enough to get it done. No way you trade Goligoski and go with Lovejoy/Engelland as your 3rd pairing, and moving blueline offense for forward offense a bad idea anyway. Richards is highly coveted so it’s going to take a king’s ransom. Unfortunately Shero doesn’t have many chips to play this deadline.

    • Brian K.'s Gravatar Brian K.
      February 19, 2011 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

      I think Dallas is currently trying to sign Richards to an extension. If that fails, they might just want to relieve themselves of his salary the rest of the season. If they can get him for a prospect and draft pick, then why not. They could be contenders even if Crosby doesn’t come back.


            

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