Mike Richards Very Candid After His First AHL Game

Richards Mike AHL by Rich TiltonAfter watching his team win its second Stanley Cup in three seasons, Kings GM Dean Lombardi had a debate on his hands – what should he do with Mike Richards? Last off-season was the final chance NHL clubs were given to use an amnesty buyout, where by those dollars would not take up future salary cap space. Instead, after several intimate chats, Lombardi opted to keep Richards, who vowed to show up at training camp in the best shape of his life.

Earlier this week, after failing to find a trade partner, Richards was placed on waivers and eventually sent to AHL Manchester after going unclaimed. Following his debut with the Monarchs on Friday night, He spoke with MayorsManor after playing his first-ever AHL regular season game and answered questions about many of the things that have taken place over the past few days…

On how he felt in the game:

“Probably not great. I wasn’t great. I had some good shifts, did some good things, did some bad things, had some bad shifts. [You can] only go up from here.”

On how he found out about being waived:

“Dean called me on Sunday night and told me. That was that.” [Reporter: Did he have any specific message for you?] No. It was a pretty quick conversation. ‘I’m putting you on waivers tomorrow. See you later.’ There’s nothing you can really say to be honest. It is what it is. He’s not going to say anything that’s going to make it any easier.”

On his feeling on being sent to the AHL:

“It’s not easy. That’s for sure. But, at the end of the day, I’m a hockey player. I [did] what I was told in LA. Whether it was third line, second line, fourth line, I do what I was told. I got told to come down here and play, so I do what I’m told. It’s what being a hockey player is all about.”

On how much time he had to get acclimated in Manchester:

“We skated yesterday, and then [had] a morning skate today. I was in the same boat as everybody else. They just had their All-Star break. Yesterday at practice we all went and skated for the first time in five or seven days and got some of the rust out. Some of us still had it on today.”

On having to leave LA:

“It is what it is. You play hockey. That’s what I’m here for is to play hockey. I liked LA, I liked the team, but I’m in this position now. I’m a big believer in everything happens for a reason, from being drafted to Philly to being traded to LA. Everything happens for a reason. You just try to make the best out of whatever scenario you’re put in.”

On how he handles having his name be the center of discussion in the hockey world of late:

“I try not to [pay attention to it]. To be honest, I never have [read anything about myself]. Good articles, bad articles – they all seem to even out in the end.”

On if he feels uncertain of his future:

“Like I said, you just come here and play hockey and have confidence that things are going to work out.”

On his mindset going into his next game:

“Be better. I think we [have] four or five days until the next [game], so it gives you some time to get used to it [and] get your legs under you. I’ll probably feel a lot better then.”

On if he considered any adjustments outside of hockey in an effort to get his game back on track:

“No. I haven’t. [Reporter: Any plans for them in the future.] You’re going to try things that have success, but I feel like I can still play.”

A full game recap – including analysis, line combinations, video highlights, etc. – can be found here.

Also, as noted pre-game…


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RELATED CONTENT:

Mayor’s Minutes on NHL Radio: Mike Richards Future in LA

Full Details on Kings’ Maneuvers with Richards

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Comments

  1. why don’t the Kings move Richards to left wing? With Pearson out, they are again very thin at LW. He would have less defensive responsibility and Carter could stay at Center, which Sutter prefers.

  2. PurpleNGold says:

    Has Richards thought of contacting Gary Roberts or Temu Salene on how they sustained long careers and played at a high level? Has anyone suggested to him of reaching out to them?

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