The Rangers used their first of two amnesty buyouts earlier this year on Wade Redden.
Following this season, Richards has seven more seasons on his contract and a cap hit of $6.6 million.
Button and Hnidy both agreed that this summer was not the time to use the amnesty buyout but that if Richards doesn't show improvement through next season, he could be a definite candidate for the amnesty buyout then.
Teams are allowed to use amnesty buyouts through the summer of 2014.
In the Ottawa Sun, Bruce Garrioch writes that this is something that the Rangers are considering as they look to clear more cap space.
Richards contract is worth a total of $60 million and $24 million of it will be paid out by the end of the season.
The Rangers would owe Richards $27 million for the next 15 or so years if he is bought out. That money would not count against the cap.
In the Edmonton Journal, Jim Matheson lists Richards as one of his top ten candidates to be bought out.
He puts the odds of the Rangers buying out Richards at 50/50, thinks that Richards is playing like a center worth only $4 million and says that the game may be too fast for him now.
Adam Rotter: I think that the chances of the Rangers buying out Richards this summer are small. It's not fair to just give Richards a pass for this year because of the lockout and having the flu during a short training camp. He has underachieved on the ice, but with the Rangers commitment to Richards, his role as a leader, the lack of depth at center and a chance to redeem himself in a full season, Richards should be on the team next year. If he finds himself struggled during next season, then it's much more likely that they use the buyout in 2014 when they could clear his cap number and create more space with the salary cap expected to rebound and rise that year.