Richards Confident in His Leadership To Bring Team Back Up

PHILADELPHIA- A lot has come into question for the Philadelphia Flyers in the past few weeks. Rightfully so. None have affected the locker room more than the ongoing issue of who’s carrying out the leadership role. Captain Mike Richards has been under scrutiny since this current losing streak started two weeks back.

Is he or isn’t the right captain to take this team and ride them on his shoulders? Some thought definitely yes while others had their questions.

Last night; however, Richards answered and reacted to all the detractors who question his heart, determination, and most importantly his handling of being the man who wears the ‘C’ on his sweater.

After the game, Richards spoke about the now famed Dan Carcillo one punch penalty that gave the Capitals a nine-minute power-play that ultimately sunk the Flyers when they netted three goals. He didn’t like the fact that as the captain, he recieved barely any explanation from the referee who made the call.

“The one (official) would not even talk to me and other one was pretty short and wouldn’t let me say much,” Richards said. “I feel I’m the captain of the hockey team, I just got put down nine minutes, you’d think that I’d get a pretty serious explanation or maybe even get a word in there.

“I think he knows, in the heat of the game, sometimes emotions take over a bit,” Richards said. “I think he is well aware he made a mistake. I think he learned from it. I just talked to him, seen him, and he learned from it. I don’t think we’ll see that anymore.”

Richards most likely gave Carcilo the riot act afterwards Which is deserved. Carcillo in all intensive purposes cost them the game just when the momentum was shifting towards Philly.

Accountability came into question after that, and Richards took a stance on that reoccurring issue.

“I’m not a coach. All I can do is hold people accountable in here,” Richards said. “I just don’t think it’s going to be a problem anymore.”

These words have never really came out of the captains mouth like they did last night. Richards knows the perception of not only him right now, but his team.

I don’t care what some media outlets or national commentators want to say about Mike Richards. All I know is that he wears his heart on his sleeve and cares more about his teammates than most want to observe to believe so. He wants to win just as badly as the next guy in that locker room and he proved that to us last night.

The timing is perfect. The team has lost eight out of their last nine and are headed on the road to face Montreal on Monday, a perfect chance to get off this skid. Richards knew his captaincy was being questioned lately, so what to do? Prove that he’s ready to carry this team on his back and get out of rock-bottom.

“I’ll hold the team accountable for that and I should have responded better,” Richards said. “Now is the time to work on things, improve and get ready for (Montreal). It has to get better and it will get better.”

“I’m confident in the people we have in this dressing room and I’m confident in the leadership I have to improve the team. We’re at a dead end right now and I’m ready to lead the team forward.”

Now, obviously results have to follow, but that was a clear-cut message that the captain is on board to try to write this ship and play to the potential that this Flyers club is capable of. It begins tomorrow in Montreal, then when you get back home on Tuesday.

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2 Responses to “Richards Confident in His Leadership To Bring Team Back Up”
  1. matt says:

    I liked what I heard out of Richards post game last night. Its the kind of stuff you want to hear out of your captain. If Laviolette is preaching disclipine & accountability, then the captain has to as well. Once they start winning again, I think most of this “Richards should give up the captaincy” talk will subside. But the problem is, as captain, you often get too much credit when the team is doing well, and too much blame when things are going wrong. By no means am I saying Richards is the best captain in the league (hes not) but hes also not the worst. Hes a young guy on a team with mile high expectations. Obviously its tough on Richie when the team has Chris Pronger, a former captain, & former cup winner sitting in the same locker room. However, something tells me that their isnt as many “locker room leadership problems” as we might think. I think the media is looking to stir something up to give them good stories day after day.

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