UPDATE (7:15) – Darren Dreger elaborated on TSN's Insider Trading, saying that Sather is "moving towards" moving Callahan and that it's "50/50" that a deal gets done. He does, however, state that it's unlikely a deal gets done prior to Friday's Olympic roster freeze, but mainly so they can maximize trade value. Dreger says the deal with the St. Louis Blues including Chris Stewart is "still there" and implies that there would be more coming from St. Louis. He finishes by warning that the clock is equally ticking on Dan Girardi and that, if he isn't signed this week, then he might enter trade talks as well.
(6:54) – It appears that the price for Ryan Callahan could be even higher than first thought. Both TSN's Darren Dreger and CBC/NBC/NHL Network analyst Kevin Weekes have reported independently that Callahan could be seeking well above the seven-year, $42 million deal that has been thrown around in recent days.
Weekes went on Sportsnet The Fan 590 in Toronto and claimed that sources in New York told him that Callahan wants seven years and "between six and seven… closer to the 7 million dollar range." The conversation regarding Callahan begins around the 4:15 mark.
Dreger, meanwhile, went on TSN Drive on TSN 1050 in Toronto and gave similar news, claiming that Callahan wants "north of $6.5 and close to $7 million."
If the reports are true, and there's not much reason to believe they aren't, then I have a very hard time believing that Ryan Callahan will be a New York Ranger on opening night next season. As good of a tenure in New York as Callahan has had, the salary cap is not very forgiving of overspending; the Rangers of all teams know this too well. Quite frankly, Ryan Callahan is not even close to worth that kind of deal, and it's going to take some dramatic last-minute reduction of demands for him and his agent to get anywhere near what Sather and the Rangers are supposedly willing to offer by the team's unofficially established Friday deadline. Especially if the Sabres are indeed willing to go near Callahan's demands, then the Rangers will need to ignore emotion and make the move that is best for the long-term health of the organization. Even if Sather has to hold his nose while doing it.
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