Luke Richardson is accepting the end the same way he has carried himself throughout a 21-year National Hockey League career: With the ultimate in dignity, class and professionalism. While it isn’t official yet, the Ottawa Senators defenseman acknowledged today that his lengthy playing career is over after stops in Toronto, Edmonton, Philadelphia, Columbus, Tampa Bay and Ottawa, his hometown. As he spoke with the media shortly before clearing NHL waivers, Richardson found it hard to describe the mix of emotions no doubt churning inside him.
“It’s a little weird,” he said. “I’ve definitely enjoyed my time playing and it looks like it’s over. There’s pretty much no regret in that area. I’ve had a great opportunity here. Bryan (Murray, the Senators’ general manager) has given me a great opportunity in the last year and a chance to come home and play at home. This is where we wanted to be as a family and it was a great thrill here at the end, playing for the Senators.
Although nothing is certain until the coming week, he has had some preliminary discussions with Murray about coaching positions of some sort within the Senators organization and also be mentor to the upcoming young defencemen.