Thread: Speculation: Brad Richards News Part IV
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06-11-2011, 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by German Way of War View Post
I've officially jumped off the Richards bandwagon.

It's been a gradual process, but I've finally come to the realization that the Rangers can't keep throwing big money every other year, especially if the contract exceeds 4 or more years.

Richards was once a model of consistency and has played well recently, but there are concerns:

1) Take away his best three seasons (2006, 2010, 2011), he's under a PPG producer. In fact, he only avergaes about 65 or so points a season in the 7 years I am talking about.

Keep in mind, two of his three career-best seasons (2006, 2011) were walk years.

2) The injuries are starting to pile up. Since 2008, he's had a broken wrist, a broken hand, hip surgery and the concussion. From 2001 to 2007, Richards only missed 2 games. Two games out of a possible 492.

In 4 seasons since 2007, he hit the 80-game mark once. Forty six games lost to injuries in that span. His body (naturally) is trending downward.

3) He isn't the 1991 Mark Messier, one season removed from a Hart and Conn Smythe-worthy Cup run. Richards get a lot of praise for his Cup and Conn Smythe, but that was 7 years ago. I'm not saying he wont produce in the playoffs, but he hasnt played in a playoff game in three years. If he is going to get big money, you'd like to have a current playoff resume IMO.

4) Richards is God-awful defensively. God-awful. Takes a lot of risks in his own end and at the blue line. Say what you want about our defense and Henrik, but anybody who knows this team can't forget how offensive zone turnovers have been killing us.

5) Derek Stepan had an excellent rookie season and is 10-times better defensively than Richards ever was. He is also a very good playmaker. You have to consider he went straight from the NCAA to the NHL. He deserves an increased role and right now is as cheap as they come. IMO, the likelihood of Richards busting while simultaneously stunting Stepan's development is far greater than Stepan or AA never hitting 65 points, which is what Richards produces in non-walk years.

I am not denying that Richards is a world-class talent. I can only go by what I know about this organization and this city, and its combined penchant to make big-name and expensive veteran acquisitions under-perform.

Tampa signed Richards to a massive contract and cut sling load in less than two years. That tells me something. Richards reportedly also said he deosnt want to be in a big hockey and media market. WTF does that mean? "I dont want to take responsibility as a leader when the team isnt producing?"

Eff that. No friggin thanks. As a fan and a new Yorker, I want the guys who want to come here because it's a tough place to play. Because by the sounds of it, the only thing bringing Richards to New York are Torts and money. IMO, there is no way in hell that Richards will be worth the money and the term.

IMO, Paul Statsny is the guy to target.
Your argument goes completely out the window when you suggested Paul "Statsny." Literally everything you argued against Richards can also be applied to Stastny. The injuries. The skewed PPG stats. Stastny has played in 15 playoff games and scored a whopping 8 points.

And I think you are severely underrating Richards defensive play. He's no Datsyuk but he's no Kovalchuk. He's average, IMO which is fine with me.

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