Steve Zipay takes you inside the locker room, home and on the road, with the New York Rangers, and also writes about the NHL, off and on the ice.
No trade demand hurt: Excerpts from Glen Sather's briefing
Sather's pre-game remarks on the negotiations, Callahan, St. Louis:
Called Callahan: "Hard-working. tenacious... he was terrific…I think the guy that’s coming in helps us advance a little farther than we expected to this year. A dynamic player…"
On the negotiations: "At some point when you’re negotiating, you have to say “no” or you say yes; in this case, we got too far down the line to come back. You get to an end point,and you can’t go any farther, and we were there."
"We were getting closer on the money, when this thing got started it was eight years and an awful lot of money for Ryan Callahan or for anybody else, unless you’re on the first All Star team, a player that’s won Stanley Cups. The no-trade is the one thing that really bothered me in the end, it really ties your hands, I know it’s nice for the players to have security but no trade, no yell at is a tough deal.”
Can St. Louis excel beyond age 38: "He certainly looks like it, he's in tremendous
shape, worked out with Brad all summer; he’s a dynamic specimen, I don’t think that’s gonna change."
Are the Rangers legit cup contenders? "There’s a lot of contenders right now, where we sit right now is very close. Hopefully this is going to put us over the edge."
On Plan B if this fell through: "I had another deal in place; I couldn’t think that the deal with Tampa was going to get done... this one turned out to be the better deal for us right now, the other would have been more in the future, but either way, Ryan was gone. Made final decision this morning….this has been talked about for quite a while, first time two captains ever been traded, they’re different players…I just didn’t think we could go as far as Ryan’s agent wanted, and we had to get out of it at some point, and it leaves our future a little more open down the road."
On the two draft picks surrendered: "Even drafting a first round pick is not going to give you any guarantee. (In next drafts) not a lot of guys going to play in the NHL next two or three years."
More on Callahan: "Ryan is a good guy, well-respected in the organization and by fans, so if you make that decision, either tonight we'll be excited with a new player in the lineup and play well or we’re gonna play poorly because we’re depressed. But these guys are professionals and they’ll have to suck it up. The deal is done, it’s not going to change."
Sather said he couldn't have signed Callahan and made a deal for St. Louis.
On Raphael Diaz: :We tried to make a deal for him last year. Raphael is a good puck mover, first-pass guy, can play the power play, fifth round in 15, it’s a good deal for us for insurance."