It had already been reported that the two teams were discussing a possible trade involving Martin St. Louis and Ryan Callahan, but the fact the deal actually came to fruition still comes as a shock.
So far as Tampa Bay general manager Steve Yzerman is concerned, it’s hard to see this as anything but a direct result of his initially passing over St. Louis for a spot on Team Canada’s Olympic roster. While Callahan is a good player and the draft picks can’t be overlooked, today’s transaction has arguably weakened Yzerman’s squad heading into the playoffs. The long-term future for the franchise still looks good, however, given St. Louis is 38.
Meanwhile, Rangers general manager Glen Sather made it no secret that he would trade Callahan before today’s deadline if the two sides couldn’t come together on a contract extension for the pending unrestricted free agent. Obviously, an agreement was never reached, despite Callahan’s asking price reportedly coming down in the past few days. The availability of a player like St. Louis surely made it easier for Sather to pull the trigger on the deal.