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Ex-Lightning star Brad Richards retiring

Former Lightning forward Brad Richards is retiring after 15 NHL seasons during which he established a reputation for offensive consistency and won two Stanley Cup champion­ships.

After one season with the Red Wings, Richards, 36, announced his retirement in a two-page release issued by the NHL Players' Association on Wednesday.

Richards, who is from Murray Harbour, Prince Edward Island in Canada, was a 10-time 20-goal scorer and finished with 298 goals and 634 assists for 932 points in 1,126 games.

He was voted the 2004 Conn Smythe trophy winner as playoff MVP in helping Tampa Bay capture its first Stanley Cup. He led the playoffs with 26 points (12 goals, 14 assists) and set a league postseason record with seven game-winning goals.

Richards also won a title in 2015 during his one season with the Blackhawks.

Known in the Tampa Bay area and in his hometown for his charitable work, Richards won the 2004 Lady Byng Memorial trophy with the Lightning for sportsmanship and gentlemanly play. And in 2001, Richards finished second behind goalie Evgeni Nabokov in the NHL's rookie of the year vote.

In thanking his many teammates, coaches, trainers and fans, Richards called winning two championships as his two most unforgettable moments.

"I will never forget those moments," Richards said. "Nothing compares to enjoying that night with your team and knowing what you have accomplished together."

One of Richards' teammates in Tampa Bay was Vinny Lecavalier, who announced his retirement last month after 17 seasons.

Richards was selected by the Lightning in the third round of the 1998 NHL draft, the same year the team took his boyhood friend Lecavalier with the No. 1 overall pick. Richards made his NHL debut two years later after helping Rimouski Oceanic win consecutive Canadian Junior Memorial Cup titles.

He spent six-plus seasons in Tampa Bay before being traded to Dallas in 2007-08.

PREDATORS SUIT: A chancellor will rule within the week on whether a Predators co-owner can keep his lawsuit against the team's ownership group in a Tennessee court or have to submit to arbitration. Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle heard nearly three hours of arguments in Nashville on a motion that would force David Freeman out of her court and back into arbitration with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. Freeman, a former team chairman, sued Predators Holdings LLC and current team chairman Tom Cigarran on June 23 and is seeking $250 million in damages for his original 48 percent stake in the team being diluted.

CAPITALS: Marcus Johansson agreed on a $13.75 million, three-year deal hours before a scheduled arbitration hearing. The 25-year-old Swedish forward will count $4.583 million against the salary cap.

Ex-Lightning star Brad Richards retiring 07/20/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 20, 2016 9:44pm]
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