Mike Richards Looking Forward to the Rangers

It’s no secret the Rangers and Flyers don’t like each other much. It’s also no secret former Flyers’ captain and current L.A. Kings center Mike Richards and Rangers’ forward Brandon Dubinsky aren’t friends either.

According to MayorsManor.com, Richards is looking forward to opening the 2011-12 season, his first in Los Angeles, against a team he is very familiar with, including a possible fisticuffs with Dubinsky in Europe when the teams meet Oct. 7 in Stockholm.

“Well, I didn’t think I was going to have to fight Dubinsky anymore,” said Richards, who was traded to the Kings in June for Wayne Simmonds and top prospect Brayden Schenn I’ve already fought him five times. I can’t get rid of this guy.”

Richards also had some positive words for playing the Rangers, saying it’s always memorable, and that games against the Blueshirts always bring out the best of both teams.“It’s going to be interesting. We had a great rivalry over the past couple of years, a ton of great games against them,” said Richards. Like I said before, about LA and New York, there’s always a buzz when you play the Rangers…whenever you play them it just sticks with you and there’s a hatred there because guys compete so hard against each other. It’s going to be a good start. It’s not going to be hard to kinda get up for it. I know everybody on that team and how they play. So, I think it’s going to make it easier.”

Rangers fans everywhere definitely breathed as sigh of relief in June when Richards was shipped west, although the Flyers surely received several strong players in return. I for one will miss the Richards/Dubinsky rivalry, but the Atlantic division is packed with other foes Dubinsky can mix it up with.

I can’t say I like Richards, but he’s the type of player you hate when you play against him, but love him when he’s on your team. The former 2003 first-round pick blends physicality with offense, and is a born leader, no matter what some in the Flyers’ organization claim.

Follow Matt on Twitter @MattCalamiaTHW

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