TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports that with an unstable ownership
situation, the Dallas Stars won’t be making a contract offer to Brad
Richards. It is believed that Dallas would be
interested in trading Richards’ rights prior to July 1st.
At first glance, that would seem to be very good news for
the Rangers. Whether the Rangers want to
trade a draft pick or restricted free agent for the chance to negotiate exclusively
with Richards or they choose to wait until July, the elimination of Dallas from the Richards
sweepstakes can only be seen as good news.
However, Chris Botta later tweeted that told “Brad Richards'
first choice is not to sign where hockey's life and there are a lot of
reporters. He may not have that choice.” New York and Toronto, believed to be Richards’ biggest
suitors would certainly fall in that category. The Kings aren’t on that level, but still might not be Richards’ top
choice. Dark horse Tampa Bay
might be most pleased by that information.
For his part, the NY Post’s Larry Brooks believes Richards
isn’t too worried about the size of the market of his next home.
Depending on who you ask, you’ll hear different things about
the Rangers’ willingness to offer Richards a huge deal.
If money is an issue, the Rangers may not be easily topped. But if other criteria matter more to Richards,
it’s hard to gauge how he’ll choose his next team.
The Rangers’ extreme interest in Richards has been known for
awhile, so we’re sure to hear plenty of other things like this as the free
agency period approaches.
- ESPN's Pierre LeBrun got these two comments from Richards today:
``Obviously I have to move on,’’ Richards said. ``I
had fun in Dallas
and I like the city. But the (ownership) situation is unclear so I really
didn’t have a chance to stay there. I will move on and look forward to the
opportunity to being a free agent. I’ve never had that chance in my career.
It’s a real big moment in my life to say the least.’’
"Also asked Richards about waiving his no-movement clause should the Stars get a good offer. 'It would be great to try and help Dallas
out if something was reasonable and made sense for both sides,” said Richards.
``But we’ll see what happens. You never know what will happen. I think my
mindset right now is to see how many options I have.'’’
- Here’s TSN’s
offseason game plan for the Blueshirts.