Welp, we all knew this was eventually coming and last night it finally came to a head during an episode of TSN's Insider trading as Bob McKenzie reported that the Rangers are determined to trade Ryan Callahan and/or Dan Girardi if they're not signed by the trade deadline.
Darren Dreger added that Callahan is looking for a seven-year deal worth $6 million per year, while Girardi is reportedly seeking a six or seven-year deal in the Jay Bouwmeester range ($5.4 million).
With those contract demands in mind, Dreger adds that Glen Sather has reached out to a number of GMs and he is gauging trade interest on Callahan. Dreger noted that the Rangers appear more confident about their chances of retaining Girardi.
A source has told Pierre LeBrun at ESPN.com that contract talks with Callahan have not gone well at all.
…so, who do you guys think will be wearing the "C" for the Rangers after the trade deadline?
…to be honest, I'm not very shocked by anything I'm hearing. We've been talking about this scenario on the blog all season. Although, seven years?!?!?!?! Not even the most ardent Callahan and Girardi supporters could justify those demands.
…i really do think Sather will be able to negotiate both of them down to five years, which is just enough to be an annoying contract. Similar to Lundqvist getting that seventh year when six would have been perfect.
…i must add that i'm very conflicted with the situation. This past month and a half, the Rangers proved they have just as good a chance as anyone to get through the Eastern Conference. Sure the Penguins are better on paper, but with Fluery in goal, all bets are off. And if you look at the Boston series last year, if the Rangers had any semblence of offense, that series goes seven. By getting rid of Callahan and Girardi, the Rangers are essentially waiving the white flag on the season, because they're not getting established NHL assets in return, so any deals would be for the future. Meaning they would be foregoing what could be a special season.
…on the other hand, if Callahan and Girardi hold Sather's feet to the fire, the Rangers GM will be forced to move them, because giving either or both of them more than a five-year deal isn't an option. In fact, not trading them at the deadline and losing them for nothing via free agency this offseason would be better for the organization's future than giving both long term deals. At least they'd have the cap space to replace them in the offseason.
…listen, I get that ultimately this is a business and it's all about the name on the front of the jersey, not the back, but when you're talking about two home grown guys who helped carry the Rangers out of the abyss of embarassment, you really want to see Sather find a way to keep both of them in a Blueshirt.
…so, what to do? Any chance either of them would settle for a four-year, $16 million deal? Yeah, I didn't think so.