With his client’s name swirling in trade rumors, Steve Bartlett is ready to resume contract talks.
Bartlett, who represents Rangers captain Ryan Callahan, told ESPN New York he’s going to “circle back” with the Blueshirts this week about a new contract. This comes after talks between the two sides had fallen largely silent, as Bartlettt told ESPN there hadn’t been much in the way of substantive negotiations over the past few days.
It’s been a wild week on Broadway for the Rangers and Captain Cally.
The New York Post reported Callahan wanted a seven-year, $42 million deal, which GM Glen Sather countered with a five-year, $30 million offer. The disparity in money and term kicked off speculation about the possibility of Callahan being dealt, with TSN reporting the Rangers had inquired about St. Louis power forward Chris Stewart.
On Friday, a report surfaced claiming Bartlett had permission to speak to other teams about the possibility of a trade — and, most likely, a subsequent signing, as Callahan is an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.
Montreal added some forward depth on Tuesday, acquiring diminutive forward Paul Byron off waivers from Calgary.
Byron, 26, is a veteran of nearly 150 career NHL games, most coming with the Flames. Despite fairly solid production over the last two years — 40 points in 104 games — he was exposed to waivers on Monday, along with fellow forward Mason Raymond.
(Calgary does have a logjam of players at forward, hence parting ways with Byron and Raymond.)
Byron can play both wing and center but, at 5-foot-7, 153 pounds, is one of the most undersized skaters in the league. Thankfully for him, Montreal has an affinity for undersized forwards, with the likes of Brendan Gallagher (5-foot-9, 184 pounds) and David Desharnais (5-foot-7, 174 pounds) already on the active roster.
Byron could also fill Zack Kassian‘s roster spot. Kassian is currently suspended without pay while undergoing Stage 2 of the NHL’s Substance Abuse program.
The New York Islanders have claimed goalie Jean-Francois Berube off waivers from the Los Angeles Kings, the club announced today.
Berube won the Calder Cup last season with AHL Manchester, but the 24-year-old has yet to appear in an NHL game.
That the Isles claimed Berube could be evidence that Jaroslav Halak will not be ready to start the season after all.
If that’s the case, Berube would back up Thomas Greiss, with Stephon Williams expected to go to the AHL.
The Isles open their regular season Friday at home versus the Blackhawks, then play the next day in Chicago.