The Tampa Bay Lightning announced on Thursday evening that veteran forward Ryan Callahan underwent shoulder surgery this week and is expected to be sidelined for the next five months.
That timeline could keep him out through at least the first month of the 2018-19 regular season.
Callahan, 33, appeared in 15 playoff games for the Lightning including 10 minutes of ice-time in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final. It was obvious, though, that he was extremely limited and had a rather dreadful night on the ice, finishing as a minus-three in the Lightning’s 4-0 loss.
He scored two goals in the playoffs.
In 67 regular season games he scored five goals and recorded 18 total points.
He still has two years remaining on his current contract that pays him $5.8 million per season. He also has a limited no-trade clause.
Injuries have been a significant issue for Callahan the past two years as he has been limited to just 85 out of a potential 164 regular season games. He has scored just seven goals during that stretch. Given the injuries, his age, and rapidly declining production that is a significant salary cap number to carry, especially as the Lightning have to worry about new contracts for J.T. Miller this offseason, and then Nikita Kucherov and Brayden Point next offseason.