Mike Richards has had his name connected to trade rumors. He’s had his name connected to buyout speculation. And yet, through it all, he’s remained with the L.A. Kings and is a two-time Stanley Cup champion.
Though, you look at his bottom-line individual numbers – goals, assists, points in games played – and they certainly aren’t becoming of someone with a $5.75 million cap hit, according to Capgeek.com. Given the money and the term of his contract, you can see how this speculation gets started.
Richards, now 29 years of age, has scored only four times in 26 games for the Kings this season. He has only 10 points, yet he’s still got five more years after the 2014-15 season remaining on his current, 12-year contract, which he signed while still a member of the Philadelphia Flyers.
But while the offensive output has slowed considerably over the years, from his peak of 80 points in 79 games with the Flyers in 2008-09, Richards still seems to be seen as a favorable asset for Kings head coach Darryl Sutter.
“I totally trust Mike. He doesn’t have to earn it,” said Sutter, as per the L.A. Times. “Again, it’s not about Mike, it’s about the position, and I think he totally understands that. He’s about the end result, the win part. That’s what he’s about.”