NHLPA files grievance on behalf of Mike Richards

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The NHLPA has “filed a grievance on behalf of Mike Richards contesting the termination of his contract” by the Los Angeles Kings, the union announced today.

This move is not unexpected, after the Kings claimed in June that there’d been a “material breach” of his contract that allowed them to terminate it. It soon emerged that Richards was under investigation by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police for an incident involving the alleged possession of OxyContin pills at the U.S.-Canada border.

But Richards has not been charged with any crime, so it’s no surprise that the union has filed a grievance on his behalf. The 30-year-old forward had five years and $22 million remaining on his deal. As of today, he’s an unrestricted free agent.

No word yet when an arbitrator may hear the case.