Flyers could pursue Brad Richards if he's on market

Danny Briere, a big playoff performer, has been slowed the last couple of years by injuries. The center is expected to be bought out by the Flyers. RON CORTES / Staff Photographer
Danny Briere, a big playoff performer, has been slowed the last couple of years by injuries. The center is expected to be bought out by the Flyers. RON CORTES / Staff Photographer
Posted: June 20, 2013

Will center Danny Briere's spot in the Flyers' lineup be taken by Brad Richards?

The Flyers plan to buy out Briere, who has a $6.5 million salary-cap hit and two years remaining on his deal. A club source said the Flyers would "absolutely" be interested in Richards if the New York Rangers use a buyout to get his annual $6.67 million cap hit off the books.

Richards' contract runs through 2019-20. But he would become an unrestricted free agent, able to sign a new deal, if the Rangers buy him out.

Briere, one of the NHL's greatest playoff performers, has been slowed by injuries the last two seasons. When healthy, he is still a dangerous scorer. In fact, it wouldn't be shocking if the offensive-challenged Rangers pursued him when he becomes an unrestricted free agent on July 5.

Briere, who will turn 36 in October, lives in Haddonfield and wants to stay close to the area to be with his three boys.

The 6-foot, 196-pound Richards, 33, would give the Flyers more size than Briere, who is generously listed at 5-10, 181 pounds. Richards is coming off a season in which he had 34 points in 46 games, but his cap hit may cause New York to use the amnesty clause on him.

By far the most accessible player on the Flyers, Briere will be missed in the locker room. He managed just six goals and 16 points in 34 games last season.

Under terms of the new collective bargaining agreement, teams are allowed a total of two compliance buyouts in the next two offseasons. Teams cannot start the buyout process until 48 hours after the Stanley Cup Finals end.

The Flyers will use one buyout on Briere, and they are undecided on whether to use another on goalie Ilya Bryzgalov.


Contact Sam Carchidi

at scarchidi@phillynews.com. Follow @BroadStBull

on Twitter.

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