Life’s a beach for new Kings center Mike Richards

Hopefully Richards has more to smile about coming to L.A.

The L.A. hockey Kings made a big trade yesterday acquiring Philadelphia Flyers captain Mike Richards for forwards Wayne Simmonds, Brayden Schenn and a 2012 second-round draft pick. Kings G.M. Dean Lombardi (a Massachusetts native) compared this off-season deal to the Boston Red Sox trading for Adrian Gonzalez this past year and Gonzalez is currently leading the American league in batting and rbi’s so Lombardi can only hope and pray for a similar outcome even close to that from Richards who’s averaged 28 goals and 42 assists over the past 4 seasons in Philly.

Mike was kind enough to give me a call this morning from his home in Kenora, Ontario Canada which I learned today is close to Winnipeg and not much else. As you’ll hear from his voice, he’s a nice down to earth guy who just happens to have 9 years remaining on his annual $5.7 million dollar contract (which should afford him to buy huge chunks of Kenora if he ever chooses to?).

Mike Richards with Ted Sobel:

Personally, I will miss what Wayne Simmonds had brought to the ice for the Kings with his pinball machine-like hitting and agressive style of play. But for the past few years the ‘Crowned-ones’ have had less scoring than the 40 year old Virgin so it’s high time they add some proven names on the front line and Richards is a great start! If only Mario Lemieux would consider a comeback…that problem would be solved!;) Actually today is ex-King Bernie Nicholls’ 50th birthday and when wishing him a happy day on his facebook page, I mentioned that he could still help the Kings’ anemic power play. Bernie responded with “I think with all the 5 on 3–I could still do it”. And you know what, I believe him!

To think that it’s been exactly 30 years since I began interviewing Nicholls as a 4th round pick of the Kings is more than my little brain can fathom! Does anyone remember Bernie’s 70 goal season alongside ‘The Great One’ on the power play? It was like watching a video game.

Did the same person who chose ‘Winnipeg Jets’ as the new name of the long gone Atlanta Thrashers name my blog ‘’.

Please remember that comments are always appreciated!
(Photo courtesy of Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

About Ted Sobel

Award winning sportscaster/journalist covering major events around the world since 1973. Please check out my new book 'Touching Greatness' and deep audio vault---and follow me on Twitter and Instagram (@tedsobelsports).
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11 Responses to Life’s a beach for new Kings center Mike Richards

  1. Great interview, Ted. This made me even more pumped to have Richie in black and white. We’ve been waiting for this type of deal for a long time, now.

    Check out our take on the trade at

    Keep up the good work and LET’S GO KINGS!!

  2. 4ndr3y says:

    Thanks for this very cool interview. =)

  3. Eden Newman says:

    So sad to see Richie leave Philly, but it seems like you guys are excited to have him. Hope he dominates like we know he can.

    Great interview. Hopefully he’ll get to see movies at the Arclight like I used to. 🙂

  4. Ltrain says:

    God, I’m gonna miss Richie. 😦

  5. Gann Matsuda says:

    Great stuff Ted. I know you remember Bernie Nicholls, but I also know that you were close, personal friends of Sir Frederick Arthur Stanley and Lord Stanley of Preston, as well. 🙂

  6. Carole Goetz says:

    I was devastated to hear that the one Flyer who meant the most to me over the many years I have been a fan had been swept away so unexpectedly. I will miss him dearly and it just won’t be the same without him. But I must say that your upbeat and encouraging interview with him helped me, and I’m sure, Mike, too. I know that he will be a fan favorite out there and will do everything he can to help make the Kings successful! Thanks, Ted…and thank you Michael for a great six years.

  7. Winnie says:

    I think LA will have a lot of Flyer fans watching games on center ice and game center, or as much of each game as we can considering the time difference. This has been a horrible week for a lot of us and we will miss both Richards and Carter. You guys are going to love him, he’s a heart and soul player who is a fantastic defensive forward. I’ll miss him on the PK more than anything, as will the Flyers.

    • tedsobel says:

      Unfortunatelty Winnie, the way the NHL plays it’s awful schedule, we only get to see the Flyers and other eastern teams once in a blue moon. And after seeing a few videos highlite reels of Richards and his style of play, I can’t wait to see him here on a regular basis. As in all of sport, we should feel priviledged to have a special player on our home team for whatever length of time we get? And I hope you appreciate the time you got to see Richards play on a nightly basis and now it’s L.A.’s turn. And believe me, the loyal Kings fans will take to this guy verrrry quickly! Assuming he plays the way he always did for the Flyers…and after speaking him for a few short minutes, I have no doubt he’s ready to give his all for the remaining 9 long years left on his contract! Thanks for the comments.

  8. Diane Gallagher says:

    Being a die hard Flyers fan for 40 years I’m so sorry to see all our players go. It was a huge disappointment to see Gagne go when that happened. We were just floored! But we are hockey fans — not just Flyers fans, and we are so happy to see you win if we couldn’t. Congrats Richards, Gagne and Carter and Williams. We’re so freaking happy for you! Happy Cup Day!

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