Kings Take Step In Right Direction With Richards


Many may question the blockbuster trade that sent Kings’ winger Wayne Simmonds and much sought after prospect Brayden Schenn, along with a second round draft pick in the 2012 draft to the Philadelphia Flyers for Mike Richards in return.

With Schenn’s outstanding performance during last year’s IIHF World Junior Championships, Schenn’s value sky rocketed. However, it did not seem Kings GM Dean Lombardi would be willing to part ways with Schenn. Throw fan favorite Wayne Simmonds and a second round draft pick in the mix and most would laugh at the absurdity of the proposed trade.

Apparently that was the right price to bring the Flyers’ captain to the west coast. Some may say, “In order to get something great you must be willing to give something great”. Sure Schenn may be the next big star, but him  developing into that star may take a while to occur, Richards on the other hand will make an immediate impact on the Kings roster.

With the addition of Richards, the Kings will have one of the best groups of centers in the league. Known for his grit and heart, the Kings will be adding another versatile, two-way forward which will prove vital, especially if the Kings suffer a major injury during the season (reference Kopitar going down late last season).

Richards will more than likely grab the center spot on the second line, leaving Kopitar on the first line and moving Jarett Stoll to the third line. This could prove to be one of the strongest line ups down the center on any team in the league.

Along with Richards’ on ice performance he will prove to be a crucial player in the locker room, being more experienced than the majority of the Kings roster. Richards has played in 63 playoff games in his career. He played more games (23) during the 2009-2010 season, when he came two games away from winning the Stanley Cup, than most Kings players have played in their entire careers.

This move will give the Kings what they need to battle it out with the San Jose Sharks for the Pacific Division title, and the rest of the league for a shot at the Stanley Cup next season, something that may have taken a season or two of molding Schenn to occur. Richards’ presence on both the ice and the locker room will be immediately noticed and prove to be a major catalyst in the development of the Kings organization.

 

Tags: Brayden Schenn Dean Lombardi Philadelphia Flyers Richards Wayne Simmonds

  • KOOLTHINGTERRY

    Dean Lombardi has traded the following:
    -1st round pick
    -2nd round pick
    -3rd round pick
    Colten Teubert
    Brayden Schenn
    Wayne Simmonds
    for
    Dustin Penner
    Mike Richards

    It just seems like he’s mortgaged WAY too much of the King’s future/depth for a some what marginal return, especially in the Penner trade.

  • Eric Roberts

    Lombardi has given up quite a bit but has received two premiere players in return. Yes, Penner may have not performed in his time with the Kings so far, but if he finds his form next season he can be a very valuable asset to the Kings. Richards on the other hand will bring in so much leadership and experience to the team, possibly over filling a hole that will be left when Smyth leaves in the near future.

    In order to get these players Lombardi definitely gave up a chunk of the Kings future. But, bringing in Richards will keep a solid experienced veteran with the Kings organization through the 2019-2020 season. Doing all this with out taking too much of a hit on the salary cap. When Smyth is moved that will free up some money possibly allowing Lombardi to make another move during the off season.

    Sure this all could blow up in the face of Lombardi but could have an extremely high pay off in the end.

  • Pingback: Daily Pucking Grind. Happy Tuesday. June 28th « The Rat Trick | A Florida Panthers Blog