When describing a hockey player as a “powerhouse” you tend to start thinking about tall, big players who dominate the game as soon as their skates touch the ice. The Nashville Predators have that kind of guy in their system and his name is Anthony Richard.
For the Milwaukee Admirals, the Nashville Predators AHL Afilliate, Richard was just that. While he only stands 5’10”, which might look small compared to other players, the 22-year old’s level of play has put him near the top with Milwaukee’s best players in the last 5 years.
Richard started the year playing at a level of hockey that looked more energetic than other players and he was able to maintain playing at that level all year. Each shift that Richard was called upon, he would show 110% effort for whatever he was asked to do.
His speed, hustle and ability to out play defenders gave him high scoring chances for goals and it helped him get in areas for better passing chances.
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The 2018-19 season started Richard’s 3rd year in regular AHL season play. Richard had played in 130 games, scored 26 goals, earned 29 assists for 55 points in his first two years with Milwaukee.
In his third season, Richard found himself at the top of the Admirals scoring list nearly doubling all his stats from the previous years!
Richard played in 73 games scoring a team leading 24 goals and assisted 23 times scoring another team leading 47 points. Richard also scored his first AHL playoff goal netting 4 in total and lead the team in playoff points with 5. Although, his overall plus/minus ended the year at a negative six, Richard posted 6 power play goals, 8 power play assists and even a shorthanded goal!
The Nashville Predators Predators currently have a comparable player of the same size, speed, and even had a close overall draft pick that Richard has. This player would be, Viktor Arvidsson. In 2014, Arvidsson was 22 years old and had 70 games played scoring 22 goals and earning 55 points for the Admirals.
The hustle, energy and heart that Arvidsson showed in every shift blew fans away in Milwaukee and it continued to grow in Nashville where he became the top goal scorer for them last year.
If Richard can continue to grow his skill set and play at a level higher than he played last year, the Nashville Predators could find themselves with another player like Viktor Arvidsson. It doesn’t matter that they are a bit on the short side, they make up for it by putting in that extra effort each shift to create offense. Richard and Arvidsson are two of the best “powerhouses” in this organization that we get the honor to watch.
It is great to see that Richard is progressing and getting closer to that next step. This being Richard’s last year on his contract, hopefully we will be able to see an even bigger display of offense to prove that he is a player we need in this organization.
For now, there is still some room to grow, however putting up 47 points of offense is the highest we have seen in two years in Milwaukee. We shall keep an eye on Richard with great anticipation on his future.