Thursday, September 11, 2008

Richardson gets a tryout

Don Brennan published a story in the Sun today stating that Luke Richardson has been invited to the Senators training camp. Got to give the 39-year-old credit, he might be in better shape than he was last year and certainly earned a look after how much he did for the team in 2007-08. The story went on to say that if he didn't make the Ottawa squad, it is unlikely that the Sens would ask him to go down to Binghamton--more likely he'd be hired to work in a coaching role. A quote from GM Bryan Murray from the Sun story:
"I don't think I want to do that with him," said Murray. "I think we want to have younger guys down there at this point. If he can't (play in Ottawa), we'll probably have something for him in the organization. He'd be around the coaches. I don't know that he'll have a title like that, but kind of an eye-in-the-sky deal."
You've got to give Richardson all sorts of credit for approaching this situation with such professionalism. Some veterans would be insulted to be invited to camp without a contract, but he's looking at it as the opportunity that it is.

As much as I like Richardson, I don't think there's a spot for him on the blue line this season. The top four positions are all but guaranteed to Chris Phillips, Anton Volchenkov, Filip Kuba, and Jason Smith, but Richardson wouldn't fit in the top-four anyway. Another year in the AHL might be good for Brian Lee's development, but I would think he would be better served playing in the NHL--especially since he did so well last year. And Murray has said he expects Alexandre Picard to be a virtual walk-on through camp, because of his potential and his one-way contract. And there's still Christoph Schubert, who's salivating at the prospect of playing a full year on defence. Oh yeah, and Brendan Bell could make a good impression. Then again, I didn't think Richardson was going to make the team last season, either, so I've been wrong about him before.

But Richardson's got a chance, at any rate. I'm glad that he'll continue in the franchise, in whatever capacity.
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