Normally one goal and two assists does not earn the description of spectacular. However, for the New York Rangers‘ Brad Richards, it does.
If you do not remember, last season Richards was so bad in the playoffs. He totaled one goal and no assists through 10 games and as a result he was a healthy scratch in the Rangers’ final two playoff games before they were eliminated. Richards, through just one playoff game this season, has already produced more than he did all of last year’s postseason.
Not only that, but the goal Richards scored for the Rangers, vs. the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 1 of the first round of the playoffs on Thursday, was a huge power play goal in the third period, which gave the Rangers a 2-1 lead at that time. The Rangers would go on to add two more goals before game’s end and win by a 4-1 score, taking a 1-0 series lead over the Flyers.
This series is still far from over and if the Rangers want to go on to beat the Flyers in this best-of-seven series, Richards will need to continue to produce and give 110 percent, because not only are the Rangers’ playoff lives at stake but so is Richards’ career.
With this offseason being the last year the Rangers can use their compliance buyout on Richards (who still has 6 years left on his 9- year $60 million deal) he must do well to make the Rangers even think about keeping him next season.