The Richards saga: My take

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Here’s my column from The Journal News and LoHud.com, with some new, corrected info on the recapture penalty as it pertains to Brad Richards’ potential retirement if the Rangers don’t buy him out via amnesty next summer. The original numbers were incorrectly figured by capgeek.com, and since corrected, in a buyout/recapture calculator (click here) on the site:

By Rick Carpiniello

If Brad Richards, proud, competitive and caring athlete that he is, bounces back next season, and if he’s not injured one year from now, then the Rangers will possibly have made a good decision.

But is it a gamble worth taking?

I’m going to come right out and say it. I think this is a terrible, reckless call the Rangers made Friday, when they said they will not exercise their second compliance buyout on the 33-year-old Richards, meaning he is staying put until next summer, then bought out.

That is, unless he is injured when the next buyout window arrives, following the 2013-14 season. If he is, the Rangers are up the salary cap creek without a paddle until the next lockout in 2020.

Richards came into the season out of shape because of the lockout and no training camp, and he had, by far, his worst season ever, even if his stats weren’t nearly as horrible as the play he exhibited.

But that is so not the point.

The point is that this is a huge gamble because if Richards is injured at buyout time ’14, he cannot be bought out. That means the remaining six years of his $60 million contract stay on the books, with the hefty cap recapture clause penalties (as much as $5.667 million per year for the final three years, for example)  if he retires before the end of the contract. That contract was designed to encourage him to retire, since it pays only $1M per for each of the last three years.

Rangers GM Glen Sather, who made this call, and new coach Alain Vigneault may say that it’s not a gamble, that odds are he won’t be hurt when the next and final round of amnesty buyouts come around. OK. But did you see him play this past season?

I suspect he will bounce back, that he will work his tail off this summer and with a full camp he’ll be better. But what if he’s not much better? What if he’s really incapable of playing top-six minutes or the power play? What if he’s a liability defensively? And on faceoffs? What if his skating legs are done, and that he’s still easily knocked off pucks?

Would the Rangers then send him home so he doesn’t get hurt and ruin their chances of using the buyout in June, 2014?

Here’s where maybe they can reason doing this: Richards gets $9M in salary next season. After that the 2/3 buyout will only be about $18 million spread over 12 years. They don’t need the cap space this coming season – though it might cost them a shot at keeping a Ryane Clowe, or of signing another free agent, including one who is bought out by July 4. But they will need the cap space next summer, when there are attractive free agents and when Henrik Lundqvist has to be re-signed, along with Ryan Callahan, among others.

The other argument is that if Richards is hurt, and it’s a long-term injury, they can get cap relief to replace him. The problem is the injury isn’t long-term, like a separated shoulder or something. Then they’re stuck with the whole contract, plus the cap-recapture penalties if/when he retires.

Finally, there’s this popular idea – mostly from Canadian media members – that Richards will flourish under Vigneault. Well, Richards’ biggest ally was John Tortorella, who gave him a far longer leash than any other Ranger until he finally had to be scratched for the last two games of the playoffs.

The Rangers had an opportunity teed up for them. They chose to not take a swing and get rid of a bad contract.

I think it’s crazy.

Photo by Getty Images.

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178 Comments

  1. even if he is good next year down the road even if they buy him out in 2016 they will have his cap charge aka drury. why not rid the cap charge now

  2. Good morning, boneheads!

    Huge gamble, indeed. Surprised they aren’t as worried about him being injured at the end of next season as we are. But this is what puzzling a bit: they ( and that now includes AV) decided to start new season with, essentially, same roster as they started playoffs in April. But without Clowe, there won’t be enough money to sign him. Unless Sather has other plans.

  3. Onecupin74yearsandcounting on

    100% with you Mr Carp.
    Torts preached defense.. true, to say he (Tortt’s ) was anti offense is false, although you did pay the price of a benching if your offense culminated in a goal for the opposition. I still don’t think that philosphy caused the nyr goal production to falter, simply they don’t have the offensively skilled players.

    Richards sucked on the PP. and old and etc on his shifts.
    To balme it conditioning tells you something about richards , I don’t want to hear the excuses, simply he did not prepare or maybe he did and simply is toast.

    By keepping richards the rangers screw themselves out of any op chance to acquire a better player if by chance the unforeseen oppurtunity does arise.

    So the pressure is on Richards to produce , I don’t see a career year which is what he’ll need to keep fans and press off his back and I don’t know where the scoring is going to come from this year.
    don’t see any career years to be had by anyone including Hank.
    which is what is usually needed to win the cup. mediocrity goes home

  4. Someone in media started a JT Miller available for trade. If it isn’t in a package deal w/MDZ for a top 3 pick tomorrow, I don’t wanna even know about it.

  5. I agree with you CW – I think Hank has a ton of sway on this team – perhaps rightly so. Either way – this is not a good $$ decision for a club that will struggle to get some energy into the bottom six. I am not sure Clowe is the answer, but they need some re-shuffling there as well as a goal scorer at the top. I say Sather does sign a aged has been – aka as always – to possibly give them a jolt up top. other than that – I dont see how they have the cap space to do much more.

  6. TheRealMikeyNJ on

    Does everyone honestly believe the same team is coming back?

    Even with keeping Richards, I’d bet the house at least 3 forwards and two of our dmen are traded.

    And everyone acts like its your money that the team is spending on keeping richards. One more year, then he’ll be bought out .

    I don’t see why u all panic so much, carp included.

    He’s staying, we all deal with it.

    Sather will make trades like he always does out of left field, and either horrify or delight us.

  7. _And everyone acts like its your money that the team is spending on keeping richards_

    Who else but the fans pay for everything? Check yourself, kid…

  8. I’m guessing this decision will probably keep them from acquiring Vanek or Stastny/Getzlaf when they become available this season.

  9. If Richards stays and doesnt get off to a fast start–the crowd is going to get on him..it wont be pretty…and I am not sure he has the onions to play thru it without it effecting his play even more…as in more errant passes…missed defensive assignments, etc…he seems like a really nice guy who somehow (as in Sather) thru his own success earned hmself an undeserved contract…and that mix given the cap ramifications…is not pretty. But dont blame the fans..especially those who shell out ridciulous fishnagels to sit there in person accept this predicament….this is not Columbus!

  10. Czechthemout!!! on

    Re the JT Miller rumors.

    Dont believe it! That idiot rumor monger Bruce Garroch out of Ottawa wrote it. Just so you know, I seen him write garbadge like this for years. The next time one of his rumors pans out will the first.

  11. Czechthemout!!! on

    That said, I would not at all be surprised that Sather has decided that this might be his last season and that he is going to go all in. We all know that Sather is a gambler and I would not at all be surprised to see him trade anyone and everyone in a futile,arrogant, and destructive attempt to win the Cup this year. If it does not work, so be it. He will ride off into the sun set in Banff on his fishing boat.

    Be afraid! Be very afraid!!!

  12. In the Ottawa Sun, Bruce Garrioch writes that the Rangers are quietly shopping JT Miller to see if they can get some established players before Sunday’s draft.

    He writes that in the 26 games that Miller played for the Rangers this season he “didn’t live up to expectations.”

    This past season, Miller, 20, played for the Whale, the Rangers and won a gold medal for Team USA at the World Juniors.

    Miller had 23 points in 42 games for the Whale, four points in 26 games for the Rangers and 9 points in 7 games for Team USA.

    Adam Rotter: The idea of Miller, as a rookie and 19 years old, not living up to expectations is a little ridiculous. John Tortorella loved Miller for a time before Miller’s game started to slip and he hurt his wrist. The Rangers may just be trying to see what kind of market there is for Miller and if they can fill a hole on the roster right now.

    THE WORST WRITER IN THE NHL IS GARRORICH

  13. A bit surprised we haven’t seen some trade action. Multiple ongoing discussions. Sense is the first deal may open the flood gates. Hope so.

    THIS ACCORDING TO DREGER

  14. As per @DarrenDreger, VAN G Cory Schneider is in play and EDM is reportedly one of the teams interested.

  15. Spot on, Carp. It’s going to take a 95th percentile season for Richards to justify his cap hit with downside ranging from bad to press-boxed to cap ruining. Terrible, terrible decision.

  16. TheRealMikeyNJ on

    @ICCP

    Maybe you or others do, I haven’t spent one dollar since the lockout started and ended and I won’t be for a loonnngggg time

  17. Nice article, Carp. Agree 100% with your analysis. I hope that it was not Tortorella single-handedly stopping Slather from selling our talented youth for over-the-hill city slickers. If that’s the case…guess they’ve lost this fan next season. What a bear.

  18. This organization is great at misjudging how much gas is left in a players tank.
    We always sign players starting to go downhill

  19. I am going to respectfully disagree Carp, my usual pessimism lost on this one and I believe Richards will be back to much better form under AV. There is no way that he can be as bad as he was last season…and why does everyone put the onus upon Richie to fix the powerplay? Could it be that the coaching for the PP blew last season? Did they even look like they had a strategy last season? Not to me. They looked like what they were in every aspect of the game-confused and lost. I predict a much improved team this season. maybe no Cup, but much improved. I also see the Canucks not playing Tort’s style entirely either for that matter. I don’t see the Sedin’s blocking shots. etc…

  20. maybe they Redden, Richards? give the guy a chance, he’s only 33, they UFA pool is pretty thin, so give him a chance to be a player again under a new coach.

  21. Can’t Redden under the new CBA.

    Does anyone well versed know if recapture stays with NY if Sather can go all Gomez again?

  22. I think all the cap recapture calculations include the caveat: “if the player is not traded and retires.”

  23. So there’s atleast a little tiny chance we could get Gomez II given than Richards has a far better rep in the game. I’m going to hang my hat on this for a while.

  24. Aha! The reason Richie didn’t move all year is because he has a no move clause. :)

  25. _Aha! The reason Richie didn’t move all year is because he has a no move clause._

    LMAO!

  26. Leetchhalloffame on

    While we’re at it lets get Holik back. If they trade Miller they’ll be even bigger idiots than they are right now for keeping Richards.

  27. Not to beat a dead horse (please hand me that whip, thanx) but a small part of the thinking on all of this appears to be that “management” feels (ironically) that some of Richards’ many problems can be attributed to Tortorella.

  28. Clowe was a gamble, too, but I’d rather take that gamble than the Richie gamble, especially at 1/3 the price.

  29. Tomorrow Sather agrees to trade Richards, if Richards rejects, Sather amnesties. Sather a genius, everyone wins.

  30. yeah, as long as by management you mean the single guy who made this decision, because not everybody (read: the brains in the organization) was on board with it.

  31. Seems to narrow down to Dolan barking about reaching again into his pocket, or Sather completely disregarding his reputedly erudite top assistant. – ?

  32. The release said BR would not be bought out this summmer…stated differently, it means NYR would not excercise thrir last compliance buyout in the next week.
    However, that said, it does not rule out a mutually beneficial trade of BR to another club in the interim.
    I expect a lot of activity in the next week or so. So we’ll see how it all unfolds. Hey, you never know?

  33. Rob in Beantown on

    What’s with the idea Richards will turn it all around now that Torts is gone? A month ago, Richards and Torts were supposed to be bff. Richards was Torts’ guy. Now Torts is gone and revisionist history says Torts was Richards’ problem all along. It’s completely inconsistent to anybody who was paying a modicum of attention.

  34. Much rather have Gaby here than Richie, but it must be admitted that we received some useful pieces in that trade.

  35. I hadn’t read imisterD’s comment when I wrote mine, but his suggestion is a distinct possibility. One thing Sather has been good at is rectifying (his own) bad contracts.

  36. Llatonaardvark on

    Shortsighted? More like hindsighted. Except it wasn’t hindsight?

    Caps in 6.

  37. Not 100 per cent yet but looks like Nathan Horton will NOT be back with BOS. B’s talking trade and Tyler Seguin’s name has been discussed.

    wow bruins potentially trading seguin. hello sather where are you

  38. Based on the love affair that Canadian media has with Richie, I wouldn’t be shocked if his name came up in trade rumors. But, it would purely be a salary dump…doubt we get anything back in return. Still, that would be the greatest move ever. Just give him to Calgary or Toronto…

  39. Anybody think (dream?) we can get a 1st rounder for Richards in the deepest draft since 2003?

  40. The Rangers can still get hit with a cap advantage recapture penalty even if they trade Richards, according to Cap Geek. The penalty would likely just be slightly less severe (dpending on when he was traded) because they hadn’t benefited from as many years of salary being in excess of cap hit.

  41. “I stay at home at night (I stay at home)
    Right by the phone at night (right by the phone)
    But you won’t call
    And I-I won’t hu-urt my pride (call me Mr Gray)

    I won’t tell you (wah-a-wah-ooh)
    When you paint the town (ah, Mr. Gray!)
    A bright red to turn it upside down
    I’m doin’ okay,
    But I’m paintin’ it gray.”
    Call me Mr. Gray (wah-a-wah-ooh)
    Call me Mr. Gray (wah-a-wah-ooh)

    Call me Mr. Gray

  42. My view about this whole Richards situation is that the Rangers have a little bit of damage control to do with current and future players. Look at their history. They buried Redden, they buried Avery, shipped Gomez (although that was genius), and sat Richards in the playoffs. It’s probably getting to the point where players aren’t sure they want to sign with the team given the track record of management.

    By letting Richards try to prove himself in the Fall they’re essentially saying “Look we’re not that bad, we’re giving him a second chance’.

    My guess is that they’re already planning to buy him out next summer since it would defy all logic not to at that point given the potential cap recapture penalties. In the meantime, they solve their PR/perception problem with players and if Richards can contribute – that’s an added bonus. If he’s not in top form by January then I don’t think anyone would be surprised if they shut him down for the remainder of year.

  43. Actually, the calculator on Cap Geek seems to say it makes no difference to the Rangers whether he is traded – they get stung for the full amount, even if they only “benefit” from two years of salary>cap hit. But any team acquiring him also gets hit for the years he plays for them.

    Doesn’t seem logical to me, or maybe the calculator is broken…

  44. Who’s going to safely escort Slats from the suite now that Mess is gone? Fotiu and Schoenfeld come to mind, but they’re getting a bit gray.

  45. Wake me up when someone on the Rangers beat writes an article that doesn’t dance around the main issue like this one and a million other columns have.

    Namely, how can Sather still be in control after 13 years of failure?

    The fear in the media of actually telling the truth here is unbelievable.

  46. Sather: “If Mess wants to be a Supreme Court Judge, he’d be great at it. He just needs a little time behind the bench.”

  47. Matty "SatherShouldHaveKnownBetter"Boy on

    JJP@1:15, I get what you’re saying because the amount of mistakes by this front office, in every way (and less so since Clark has been here for drafting), is disgraceful.

    However, when you balance out the damage control with the potential for real financial losses that could castrate the franchise for 6 years, it is a horrifyingly shortsighted decision.

  48. Matty "SatherShouldHaveKnownBetter"Boy on

    Lark @ 1:27, IT IS TIME for the media to ramp up the displeasure about Sather. IF they start, the cannon ball could roll. It is SO time for this mistake of a GM to be gone.

    Only those of us who really watch this show closely understand what lunacy is driving the team we love.

    Was it not Sather who said “we didn’t win the cup this year” as a reason to fire his most recent and 6th coach???

    Well, we haven’t won the cup in the 13 years you have been here, Mr. Sather. By your own definition, you should be fired.

  49. Matty "SatherShouldHaveKnownBetter"Boy on

    As one who went to a number of games, you cannot convince me that Torts didn’t give RICHIE RICH$$$$ every chance possible to be successful. Offensive zone draws. Teamed with Gabby and or Nash, all lines, PP point ad nauseum.

    All he did was sit in swampland, skate slow, make some awful passes and totally miss assignments because he was so slow. How can so many fans see it AND NOT the ‘brains’ of the organization?? What was Sather watching, aside from the lighter that helps light his cigars??

    He doesn’t need another chance by a ‘fair’ coach. He was given every option possible. He needs to be ushered out of here. Period.

  50. Carp, does your full-blown panic have anything to do with your spring guarantee that he will be bailed our? Your second big guarantee that didn’t pan out? I would understand if you made your guarantee in January since the post lockout cap was known. But you began making your guarantees inApril, only because the source told you so. It’s not your guarantee really, you don’t need to own it.

  51. Czechthemout!!! on

    Cla Clutterbuck is going to be traded. Perfect third line/fourth line player who can score in the double digit range. He is a great skater who hits like a truck and can drop the gloves. Any takers on RR?

  52. Czechthemout!!! on

    Nathan Horton= 10 foot pole! Way too kany concussions to commot big money.

    David Clarkson= 10 foot pole. Another product of the Devils who will do nothing when he goes to another team. No thanks!

  53. Cross Check Charlie on

    Question: One of the reason for Richards bad year is blamed on him not being in condition.

    After 48 games wouldn’t he have been in good enough condition by then so that by the time the playoffs cam around that excuse was not valid? Playing basically every other day plus practices from January through April…why wouldn’t he be in good enough condition?

  54. “Who in their right mind would assume Richie’s contract?”

    possibly a team with buyouts to burn? probably not.

    this is truly bizzaro world

    torts fired with about 24 hours of though

    brad richards keeps his job here after months of every sign pointing to the door

    could not agree more that people acting like tortorella was somehow holding richards back are absolute buffoons, Ranger fans and hockey analysts alike…. wow. get a CLUE. The Richards/Tortorella relationship is famous, frankly Tortorella basically requested him, at whatever the contract. If anything Richards has shamed Tortorella, and should be thanking Torts for keeping faith in him for so long in the face of adversity.

    AND whenever someone says:
    “who cares how much (player) makes, it’s not like it’s YOUR money” automatically translates to:

    “I don’t understand the salary cap, therefore it doesn’t matter or exist”

  55. Stands to reason, CrossCheck. How can you play almost 60 games and attend months of practices and not be in shape?

  56. Forget “sources.” All logic would have told you, until it happened, that Torts would stay and Richards would be gone.

  57. Czechthemout!!! on

    Charlie

    It is total BS! Richards lost a step. For guy that was never a great skater, losing a step makes it seem like he aged 5 years during the off season. He may well be finshed but Sather is too arrogant to admit that he once again over paid for an UFA who failed to live up to his contract. Sather really needs to go after this season. I think we should maybe take up a collection on RR and have the posters on here contribute say $20 a piece and take out a full page add in the NY Post and Carp’s paper as fans, publicly demanding his ouster. Maybe a public show of displeasure will finally convince doe doe bird Dolan to make a much need and long over due change!

    I also think that Dolan nixed Richards buy out and like Isaiah Thomas before him, probably gave Sather one year to win.

  58. kovie, please find me the post where I guaranteed that. I was wrong, wrong, wrong on Tortorella being fired and admitted such. The organizational plan was to buy out Richards.

    There are people very high in the organization were very much against yesterday’s announcement. But Sather has re-taken complete control of the organization, so both decisions went against the people who had been doing such good work under him the last few years.

    So now I know that, while I still completely trust the people who told me these things, it doesn’t matter because Sather is back to being George Steinbrenner. And so, as was the case in 2000, 2001, 2002 when I was on the beat, there will never be a completely accurate story broken beforehand, because nobody knows, including his own lieutenants, what he is going to do.

    But feel free to mock me for trying to keep you guys in touch with what’s going on. You can obviously go elsewhere and get similar mis-information, or none at all.

    And look up guarantee. Because if I guaranteed something, then I’d owe something, right?

  59. czech, I’d be careful with Horton, for sure, but I think I’d take him over Clowe, if that ever comes down to being the choice. I’d prefer Clutterbuck, too, plus it’s a great name. And I’m thinking that the Richards decision takes Clarkson out of the equation … and I have no doubt that the guy now completely calling 100 percent of the shots again would have gone after him.

  60. iWicky "Frag Out!!!" on

    I’d take clutterbuck in a heartbeat over several of our current roster guys.

    That being said, I would have bought out Richards re-signed clowe, and traded a couple of guys so take my opinion with a grain of salt.

    I like Horton, skull candy and all

  61. Does anyone here realize how many thousands of posts we would have to read from eddie3X if we signed Clutterbuck?

  62. Czechthemout!!! on

    Carp

    Who cares what he said. There is no such thing as a guarantee. Things can change so I at least will not mock you. There is no reason to mock you. And just because one the guys in upper management told you something that did not transpire, doesn’t mean you should stop trying to keep us informed. Please continue to do what you do.

    Do you think there is any chance that Dolan has given Sather an ultimatum behind closed doors? This is it! This is your team! You made this bed, fired the coach, brought in another one. You think this team is close? Why would you then want to buy out the guy you said you needed to be your number one center?

  63. iWicky "Frag Out!!!" on

    I would love to see a clutterbuck lapierre dorsett line for the rangers next season ;)

  64. Nice to see that (almost) everyone has bought into Dorsett and his necessary role.

  65. Czechthemout!!! on

    iWicky

    That would be some line!

    If you have a chance, take a look at the TSN feature on their draft page about Sam Morin. I think he is what you hoped Mcilrath would become but is not likely to. That kid is the ltimate intimidating defenseman!

  66. I doubt Dolan will ever, ever fire Sather, czech. There would have to be a board room fistfight. Or Sather would have to moon him.

  67. Thought there were supposed to be thunderstorms today. Planned computer work, and I look out the window at sunshine and curse my decision.

  68. Carp, I don’t go anywhere because you’re the best in business. It just that sudden utter confidence (if you don’t like guarantee) didn’t make sense deep in April unless it was coming from a source. But please keep is informed. Best in business.

  69. Czechthemout!!! on

    Carp

    Your right but he can fire him without actually firing him.all he would have to do is leave him in as President but make Gorton or Shoeny or someone else the GM .

  70. I wasn’t guessing, kovie. I wasn’t opining. It was what I was told, and I spoke to somebody yesterday who said he agreed with what I wrote about the Richards non-buyout. Was surprised and very disappointed about the about-face on that decision.

    So, no, I wouldn’t be such an idiot to go out and spout something with utter confidence without knowing something. I have no idea what you’re talking about regarding deep April. The decision was made before the playoffs, and surely No. 19 didn’t do anything during the playoffs to reverse the decision. What happened in the Boston series affirmed that decision. One man reversed field after firing the coach. The only one who matters.

  71. Czechthemout!!! on

    Carp

    Maybe i’ve just convinced myself but I really think that Dolan nixed the buy out. Buying him out would in essence call for major roster changes as well. I really am thinking that Dolan wont let Sather do that again. The next time major roster changes happen, it will be done by a different GM.

  72. Dolan thinks he’s doing a great job, and they have that mysterious bet about the Stanley Cup that Dolan talked about late in the 2012 season.

    I agree, he could do that without firing Sather. He won’t. He loves the guy, idolizes the guy, and is convinced (by Sather) that Sather’s doing a great job and headed toward a championship.

    Also at risk, maybe Gorton sees this and decides it’s never going to happen here and goes to another team as GM.

  73. Czech, I just don’t think — educated guess, kovie; not a guarantee or a promise or a source — that Dolan would ever overrule Sather on a decision like that. Or any.

  74. Dolan is not the wilting violet that some people assume. Why he hangs on to questionable GMs is an enigma wrapped in a paradox, smothered in secret sauce.

  75. Czechthemout!!! on

    Carp

    Lets see what happens with Hank’s extension. So far, nothing done. I am starting to believe that if Hank does not sign or at least gives them an indication he is close to agreeing on a deal, than this may in fact be his last year as GM. If that is indeed the case, look for a real bad season folks.

  76. Czechthemout!!! on

    Carp

    Dolan is a very loyal person. Some times to a fault. I would love for him to be my boss. But he is also a good business man. Not buying out Richards makes zero business sense unless you are going to say to your friend and GM, ” what? You want another buy out? We just signed this guy because you said he is the missing piece to the puzzle. The number one center! You built this team. You said they are good enough to contend. No more overhauls! No more buyouts”

  77. Do you just pat him to watch from the press box? I think that we were 4 and 1 with him out of the line up and scored a power play goal per game.

  78. Chatted with Ryane Clowe, UFA July 5. Says he’s unsure at this point what’s going to happen. Loves New York. Rangers with little cap room… tweeted by lebrun

  79. As it stands now, I don’t even care if the Rangers make the playoffs. The most important thing to happen that will make this coming season a success, is if Richards is healthy enough to be bought out; simple as that!

  80. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    I am puzzled. Let’s hope #19 has the best year of his career. Feets don’t fail me know is his new motto.

  81. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    I am tucked in the foothills of the Sierras and it’s a cool 106 outside.

  82. Obviously sather mixed up dolan’s sloppily written cocktail napkins

    On one, JD wrote “keep Mess” and on the other “ice Richards”. When sather spilled his wine cooler, the notes melted together like the folded back page of Mad magazine. The end result? “Keep Richards”

  83. ThisYearsModel on

    CARP–your posts hear speak volumes. Sather the Super Genius appears to be back. This does not bode well for the franchise. I wonder if a player or two complained to Jimmy D who told Slats that he had better take control. More likely, Slats and Torts were not getting along all that well and had disagreements on Richards. Perhaps Slats wanted him benched and Torts did not want to bench him or something. My problem with this is that it makes the Summer boring. No picks in the first 2 rounds tomorrow and no cap room to do anything of note. I hope this does not result in prospects going out for picks.

  84. Czechthemout!!! on

    It is remarkable how inept the Flyers are with regards to their goalie situation. They have a fairly weak defense and nothing in goal. Yet here we are, on the eve of the draft and the Flyers are offering up their best defenseman for in return for a couple of young forwards. How stupid can Holmgren be? If Schnider is available, why wouldnt you look to see what it would take to get him? Why would you trade your best defenseman? What are they going to do? Sign Mike Smith?

    He is as bad as Sather!

  85. Guess the best news in a long while for you guys (except King with no Ring) is that Lundqvist’s agent Don Meehan, has been meeting with Sather this weekend.

  86. Hey Carp,
    Was ANYONE inside NYR on board with this?
    Certainly NOT Jeff Gorton. I think very highly of him. There’s no way he could think this is the right move.

  87. iWicky "Frag Out!!!" on

    Not re-signing clowe is every bit as stupid as not buying out Richards. I’d let mza and/or Hagar walk before I would risk not re-signing clowe!

    Czech
    Thanks, I will look into it

  88. Let’s suppose the Rangers did buy out Richards. Who on the FA list could they have replaced him with that is better than what Richards is capable of producing?

    The way I see it, the only downside to not buying him out this summer is if he gets injured and refuses to be bought out, they can’t do it a year from now. Yes its possible, but pretty unlikely…

  89. Rob in Beantown on

    I’d take Clowe over Richards any day of the week, especially for the money.

  90. Czechthemout!!! on

    Alex Edler is on the block. Excellent on the PP! Would go a long way towards solving our power play point position. Mdz and Boyle plus maybe a kid like Thomas.

  91. ‘If Hank goes, we start Biron and sign Jagr and Phil Esposito.’

    If Hank goes forget about Phil, we’ll need Tony.

  92. Clowe to Richie: “Can I borrow your three wood?”

    Richie: “I broke the head off, but I can give you the shaft.”

  93. iWicky "Frag Out!!!" on

    I do not understand why we would not trade Staal to the canes for the #5

  94. Problem #1, who actually made the call on keeping Richards?

    Vigneault, doubt it, ownership, Junior knows nothing about hockey. Sather and unknown staff, yes!

    #2, has the rationale for this strange move been explained to the media? Doubtful given past history but maybe Rick can tell us if anyone asked that direct question.

    #3, will season ticket holders actually respond with a cancellation of season tickets, doubtful they are basically sheep having been sheared many times before.

    #4, what has changed,what will change,what can’t miss prospects to become enthused about, does the organization have a plan they wish to share?

    Nothing,nothing,none and no in that order.

    But fear not the shills and suits will conjure up more distractions, maybe raising a Lund twist jersey to the ceilng or my own personal suggestion.

    Hanging Sather in effigy with Junior hooked to his heels!

  95. Rick, I believe when you said that Dolan idolizes Sather you nailed it for any and all unanswered questions about this franchise.

    And why they are 73 and 1 and not likely to smell a cup anytime in the near future!

    Think it will in any way affect season ticket holders, mdse. sales and internet cheerleading?

    Nothing ever changes but I blame those who pay to be stiffed!

  96. It will be interesting to see how the re-signing of Hank goes and to see how the RFA signings go.

    I am also really curious to see if any trades happen. I have a feeling a D-man will go as part of a package. I thought it would be DZ, but Staal makes sense. I’d hate to see him go, but I could see him being moved.

  97. Good evening all!

    Well said Carp…

    I happened to be wearing a 1994 shirt today, which naturally invited conversation….the street consensus was Torts gone and Richards back…crazy!

    Slats…wtb?

  98. I will now say something positive about this situation: This will be a net plus if it means we don’t make a 4 year mistake with Clowe and Richards is successfully dumped after this year. The Reset to ’97 is underway!

  99. Alex Edler is the kind of guy we should prioritize getting over throwing money away on Vinny L.

  100. If eye injury has healed, why would you ever trade Stall for only a #5 pick? And if his eye hasn’t healed, why would anyone give up a #5 pick for him? Smarten up people!

  101. You should ask Tony to fly out and cool off. 103 would make him feel like daddy cool breeze.

  102. Stranger Nation on

    are we still living in Ranger Bizarro world?

    Will someone please take slats fishing in Southeast Asia during monsoon season

    they shoot horses, don’t they? I guess not..

  103. With their various and sundry needs, they choose to keep Richie Rich. Mind numbing.

  104. Just because Carp’s source or sources are no good doesn’t mean he should stop trying to find better ones. Also, who on the Rangers roster besides Richards remembers how to play the elite, high-tempo playoff game demanded in the playoffs, now that the Snow Angel era is over? Were the Rangers going to get a top-six guy after the dump? Hardly seems like that much of a gamble to see if a fit Richards can get back to second-line effectiveness.

  105. Norm, Stepan and Brassard should be the #1&#2 centers, while a third line center would optimally be one of size.

    Wwere then does someone with Richards current skill set fit at the attendant cost?

  106. Torts changed his coaching style between time in Tampa and NY.No offensive star will do well under his coaching style-e.g. Gaborik,Nash,Richards ,Krieder or Del Sotto.
    Best to let another coach steady the ship and bring around an offense that wins and is joy to watch.
    Richards said at beginning of season, Torts is not coaching the same type game.
    Torts relied exclusively on the King and Mike Sullivan.
    Boy am I glad to see him get the boot even if the Rangers don’t make the Stanley Cup.

  107. bert, a little late with that clueless rant.

    norm, it’s not my sources that are the problem, but the guy making the decisions by himself.

  108. “The point is that this is a huge gamble because if Richards is injured at buyout time ’14, he cannot be bought out.”
    False.

    They wouldn’t be able to use the remaining compliance buyout on him.
    But if it’s not a long-term injury, they can still do an “ordinary course buyout” on him at some point in the future.

    All terms of compliance and ordinary buyouts are identical (2/3rds the remaining salary paid out over 2 times the number of years remaining) – the only difference is that the ordinary course buyout would have a cap hit – something in the area of $6mm/year through 19/20 (the last year of the contract).

    It’s not the end of the world, even if it is “high risk”.

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