Lightning Sign Richardson

The Tampa Bay Lightning [url=http://www.tampabaylightning.com/tbl/prdetail.cfm?pressreleaseID=1408]have signed veteran defenseman Luke Richardson to a one-year $500,000 deal.[/url] Barring perhaps the trade of veteran netminder Sean Burke, Richardson appears to be the final piece in the Lightning's offseason makeover. The 37 year old blueliner has played 1,312 regular season games in his long NHL career. Last year he appeared in 65 games between Columbus and Toronto notching 1 goal and 10 points and logging 16:40 a game in ice time.

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I don't get it

Feaster does a nice job in trading away Darryl Sydor and his inability to adapt to the new NHL and replaces him with a player with the same problems but a much lower salary? Just because he's getting paid $500k does not mean he is a bargain. Hopefully I am wrong and this does, in fact turn out to be a bargain. I do like his physical presence, though. On second thought, after reading up on Richardson, he may not be as bad as I had thought, so $500k for a guy to compete with Smaby, Rogers, and O'Brien may pay off.

Some of the Same Plusses Though Too

They got Luke for his leadership ability to fill the leadership void left by Sydor. That was the biggest reason for this deal. Leafs and Jackets fans seem to think he's more solid defensively at this point in his career too. If you can get 15 mins a night from Luke where he's not a liability and he's giving you that leadership component, that's a great swap. Think of it as replacing Sydor with a more defensively solid player and getting a 4th round pick and $1.6M in cap space out of the deal.

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