When Los Angeles forwad Mike Richards was knocked out of game one of the Western Conference finals by Chicago center Dave Bolland, there was concern about whether or not the Kings could even compete with the Blackhawks without their, at the time, leading scorer.
Richards had 10 points (2+8) in 14 games for LA before his injury, and was responsible for some of the Kings’ biggest goals in the 2013 postseason, including a game-tying goal for the Kings in their game two victory over San Jose in the Western Conference Semifinals.
Now, with the Kings facing elimination tonight in Chicago, Richards’ recovery was a hot topic of discussion during the team’s morning skate prior to game five.
During the morning session, Richards skated, in rotation, on the fourth line. When meeting with the media after the skating session, Kings head coach Daryl Sutter said that Richards’ chances of playing tonight are “50-50″ at best.
If LA is going to find a way to stay alive in it’s conference finals series, then having Richards back would give them a better chance of doing so. However, with Richards clearly not near 100% just how helpful could he possibly be for a team that plays a very physically demanding style?
Guess we will find out at 8pm EST if Sutter decides to put Richards in the lineup.