Brad Richards is taking his talents to the New York Rangers. According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Richards will make $60 million over nine years, a $6.67 million average annual value.
Richards is reunited with head coach John Tortorella, who coached him to the only Stanley Cup of his career in 2004 with the Tampa Bay Lightning. Because of this, and because of the Rangers’ ample salary-cap space, the Rangers were the front-runner to sign Richards all along. The prized free agent was also being pursued by the Flames and Maple Leafs.
Arguably no team went more all-out Friday than the Kings, who sent eight members of their senior staff to Toronto and compiled a celebrity video pitch as part of a presentation that was more than a month in the making.
The Kings desperately need a winger to replace the goal-scoring production of Ryan Smyth, who was traded to Edmonton a week ago at his own request. After losing out on Richards, they may turn to free agent Simon Gagne or try to pursue a trade.