Phoenx goalie Ilya Bryzgalov waived his no-trade clause to have his negotiating rights traded to the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday, but don't think that means that Brad Richards will do the same thing. Richards' agent Pat Morris confirmed today that the Stars have asked Richards to waive his no-trade clause, and that Richards has declined under advice from Morris. ``He asked in late May, and it was not a situation that was good for us, and so we said no,'' Morris said of Stars GM Joe Nieuwendyk. ``He hasn't asked again, but he understands that we would have to be aware of the situation and it would have to be a situation that would be one where we can see some benefit.'' That means that Richards needs to know the team and the circumstances before he would even consider a move, and that in itself slows the process. The problem is there really isn't the right situation out there for Richards. Bryzgalov has the ability right now to set out a plan with the Flyers and then help them adjust a very tight cap situation as they move forward. If they can't sign Bryzgalov, then there's no use making some serious trades that would be necessary to fit in the kind of money Bryzgalov is seeking. If they can, the window of negotiation before July 1would allow some wiggle room for Philadelphia. In other words, if Bryzgalov can agree to terms, the Flyers could then start moving players to open up space. That's not a real concern for the people who might be interested in Richards. The Rangers, Maple Leafs and Kings already have space. Teams like Buffalo and Columbus could express interest on July 1 and be able to move quickly. So it's best for Richards to go to July 1 and leave all of his options open. If he were to waive the no-trade clause and go to say the Rangers, what would happen if he couldn't get a contract done? Would that take the Rangers out of the bidding and reduce his ability to have the best auction on July 1? That's a possibility that has to be considered. Some would argue that by going to a team that surrendered an asset to get your rights, you create a deadline before July 1 that could force a great contract offer, and that's also a theory that could be studied. But right now the Richards camp seems to think the auction is the best path. There are others who have been traded and who have not signed. Dan Hamhuis last season was the best example. Bryzgalov could fall into that category this season. Richards does not seem to want to be one of those guys. It's his right to make that choice, so it seems that his rights probably won't be traded before July 1. Another aspect of the Bryzgalov trade is that the Flyers would have to dump some salary to fit him in, and those players traded could fit into the kind of moves that GM Joe Nieuwendyk talked about on Monday. The problem is we have to wait to see just how serious the Flyers are about Bryzalov before we see if they are willing to move bodies the way that Chicago did last summer.
Bryzgalov and Richards are two different animals
Fort Worth Star-Telegram | Jun 9