Image via wikimedia commons
The Canucks have come to terms with former Los Angeles Kings depth forward Brad Richardson. Per Bob McKenzie the pact will see the welter-weight grinder paid 2.3 million over two seasons:
Brad Richardson’s AAV in VAN is $1.15M on a 2 year deal.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 5, 2013
Brad Richardson isn’t exactly an "impact player", nor is he credible Kesler insurance. But there’s a lot to like about this signing. We’ll recap after the jump.
Last season Brad Richardson battled injury, an appendectomy procedure in effect ended his campaign, and the season before that he was generally unproductive (largely thanks to a sub-5% on-ice shooting percentage).
But Richardson has had a couple of ten goal seasons in his career, and while he’s generally played a fourth line role (though he has spent a good deal of time on Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar’s left wing over the years), he’s been a plus possession player over the past four seasons.
Richardson’s WOWYs look pretty nice and he consistently draws penalties at an elevated rate, two things I really like to see from guys at the bottom end of the lineup.
Richardson doesn’t bring size (he’s listed anywhere from 185 to 197, and is roughly six feet tall), though he can play up the lineup in a pinch he’s certainly not an everyday top-nine forward, and he generally hasn’t been an every day centreman since the 2009-10 season. So that’s the downside.
But when you compare Richardson’s contract with what other fourth line players have gone for in the first day of free-agency, this certainly looks to me, at first blush, like a reasonable gamble and a smart signing.