While Bryan McCabe’s trade value isn’t in the same ballpark (stratosphere?) as Brad Richards, they have at least one thing in common: both players would only waive their no-trade clauses for the New York Rangers. (At least if Darren Dreger’s “guess” regarding Richards’ preference is correct.*)
Much like the New York Knicks’ courtship of Carmelo Anthony during the NBA’s trade deadline, the big question is: if Richards wants to play in New York, then why give up a bunch now when they can grab him in free agency without losing any roster assets?
We’ll definitely keep you updated regarding all the big (and most of the small) trade news from today’s frenzy, which might or might not include a big Richards trade.
* – Obviously, it makes sense that Richards might want to play in the fishbowl of New York City with a coach he knows in John Tortorella. I’m a little surprised that he might not include the Tampa Bay Lightning too from a familiarity standpoint, even if Richards might not fit into Steve Yzerman’s vision from a cap perspective.
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It’s going to be interesting to see if Hammond can replicate the success he had last season, when he came out of nowhere to go 20-1-2 with a 1.79 GAA and .941 save percentage, and finish seventh in Vezina voting.