The Philadelphia Flyers announced that they have signed center Mike Richards to a 12-year contract extension, according to club General Manager Paul Holmgren. Richards’ new contract will start next season and run through the 2019-2020 season.
"Mike has become an integral part of our core group and we are extremely happy to have him under contract long term,” said Holmgren in making the announcement. “We believe that he will continue to grow as a player and as a leader."
|Mike Richards agreed to a 12-year contract extension with the Flyers on Thursday. (Getty Images) |
“I am very happy to be a part of the organization for hopefully the rest of my career,” said Richards. “It's just exciting to be a part of something that has such a great tradition and history as the Philadelphia Flyers."
Richards, 22, has recorded 14 goals and 20 assists for 34 points and 30 penalty minutes in 28 games for the Flyers this season. An alternate captain for the Flyers, Richards currently leads the team in goals (14), assists (20), points (34, tied for 17th in the NHL), shorthanded goals (3, tied for second in the NHL) and shots (80). He is first on the team in average time on ice among forwards (21:06) and is tied for first on the team in game-winning goals (3). He has set a new career high for goals in a season and has tied his career high for points in a season.
In 166 career regular season games over the last three NHL seasons, Richards has registered 35 goals and 65 assists for 100 points and 147 penalty minutes. He was drafted by the Flyers in the first round (24th overall) of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.
Prior to joining the Flyers, Richards appeared in 14 playoff games for the Flyers’ American Hockey League affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms. He recorded seven goals and eight assists for 15 points and 28 penalty minutes as the Phantoms won the 2005 Calder Cup Championship.
In four seasons with the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League (2001-02 through 2004-05), Richards registered 115 goals and 177 assists for 292 points and 308 penalty minutes in 233 regular season games. He served as Kitchener’s captain for two seasons and was named to the Memorial Cup All-Star Team as the Rangers won the Memorial Cup in 2003.
The 5’11”, 195-pound center was named to the OHL Second All-Star Team following the 2004-05 season and was the captain of Canadian National Team at 2005 IIHF World Junior Championships, recording five points (1G,4A) in six games as Canada won the gold medal.