Richards’ contract was terminated by the Los Angeles Kings in June, with the team citing a “material breach” as cause.
NHLPA spokesman Jonathan Weatherdon said the following in a statement at the time of the termination:
“We are in the process of reviewing the facts and circumstances of this matter, and will discuss the situation with the player in order to determine the appropriate course of action.”
Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston reported the following in June:
As of Monday evening, it was unclear why the team believed Richards was in violation of his contract. In a statement, the Kings said they were “not prepared to provide any more detail or to discuss the underlying grounds for the contract termination.”
Paragraph 14 in the Standard Player’s Contract stipulates that the deal can be terminated if any player shall “fail, refuse or neglect to obey the Club’s rules governing training and conduct of Players.”
Even if the contract termination is held up, the Kings will face a cap recapture penalty of $1.35-million for the next five seasons, according to war-on-ice.com. That’s slightly less than what they would’ve been charged annually for 10 years had it been bought out.
Richards signed his $69-million, 12-year deal with Philadelphia in 2008 and was dealt to Los Angeles three years later. He helped the Kings win the Stanley Cup on two occasions before the team openly expressed concerns about his conditioning last summer.