CHICAGO -- Brad Richards saw this kind of season coming for the New York Rangers back in 2011, when he chose to sign with them instead of multiple suitors as an unrestricted free agent.
But less than a year after helping New York advance to the 2014 Stanley Cup Final, Richards will play at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday as the third-line center for the Chicago Blackhawks (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA, SN1).
The Rangers, who lead the NHL with 95 points, bought out the remaining six years of Richards' nine-year, $60 million contract last summer.
Richards signed a one-year contract with the Blackhawks to continue his Stanley Cup quest, and said he harbors no hard feelings toward the Rangers.
"The only negative thing [in New York] was we were three wins away from winning a championship in an Original Six city, a great city, and that's why I was lucky enough to pick and choose this summer and come to an Original Six city here, a great historic franchise," said Richards, whose Rangers lost to the Los Angeles Kings in five games. "That's the only thing that's left out. It would have been nice to close the deal and do that, but a lot of players say that every year."