Thursday, June 23, 2011

Flyers Deal Richards to Hollywood

2010-2011 NHL StatisticsJuly 1st Status
To Los AngelesPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Mike RichardsF26812143669$5.75 million
To PhiladelphiaPositionAgeGPGAPYearsCap Hit
Wayne SimmondsF22801416300RFA
Brayden SchennF1980223$3.11 million
2011 2nd Round Draft Pick

The Philadelphia Flyers are not only making room for their new franchise goaltender, they are revamping the whole look of the club, now with the trading away of their captain, Mike Richards, now being dealt to Los Angeles for young players Wayne Simmonds and Brayden Schenn, plus a draft pick.

This means both Jeff Carter and Richards have been dealt today, once thought to be the future of the Flyers right now, but it sounded like there was some in-fighting within the dressing room, so the deals have been made and the outlook for the Flyers continues to adjust.

In this deal, the Kings get a bonafide number one/two centre that plays an exceptional two-way game, comes with leadership and some serious big game experience.  The Kings have been looking for a centre like Richards, if you've been looking at a lot of the rumours over the past couple of years.

For the Flyers, they move a little bit more salary out the door, they pick up an incredible offense talent (potentially speaking) in Schenn and a grinding forward, that plays very much in the Flyers game plan in Simmonds.  For trading away a top end player and your captain to another team, I think the Flyers should be happy with what they have received in return.

Salary Cap
The official cap number has dropped and it is $64.3 million up at the ceiling.  The Flyers, with a straight dump of Richards on the books at the moment (Simmonds needs to sign, Schenn needs to make the team), I have them in now at $47.3 million for 15 players, which now gives them ample room.  Of course, if Schenn is to make it into the line-up, he'll take a nice chunk out of that new cap space, but certainly not all of it.

As for the Kings, they now have 17 players ready to go for the 2012 season, at a projected cap hit of $53.6 million.  That gives them $10.7 million to play with for the last four to six players for their active roster.  That's a pretty good chunk of change to spend on some quality depth.

This deal changes the complexion of the league and it puts a number of teams on notice, namely in the West.  The Kings did get a little bit better with this deal on Thursday, which makes everything a little more exciting.  The Flyers are looking at a new direction, which will likely give more time to Claude Giroux and Daniel Briere, the question then remains, how much will Bryzgalov take out of this chunk of cap space.  We will soon find out.

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