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NHL: NY Rangers Acquire Martin St. Louis from Lightning
Photo Credit: Getty Images

NHL: NY Rangers Acquire Martin St. Louis from Lightning

Mar 5 2014, 10:08pm CST | by

The New York Rangers acquired right wing Martin St. Louis from the Tampa Bay Lightning for fellow right wing Ryan Callahan on March 5.

The New York Rangers acquired Martin St. Louis from the Tampa Bay Lightning for Ryan Callahan on March 5.  The deal was confirmed by the Rangers' official website:  "New York Rangers president and...

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21 weeks ago

NHL: NY Rangers Acquire Martin St. Louis from Lightning

Mar 5 2014, 10:08pm CST | by

NHL: NY Rangers Acquire Martin St. Louis from Lightning Photo Credit: Getty Images

The New York Rangers acquired right wing Martin St. Louis from the Tampa Bay Lightning for fellow right wing Ryan Callahan on March 5.

The New York Rangers acquired Martin St. Louis from the Tampa Bay Lightning for Ryan Callahan on March 5. 

The deal was confirmed by the Rangers' official website: 

"New York Rangers president and general manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has acquired Martin St. Louis from Tampa Bay in exchange for Ryan Callahan, a second-round pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft and a first-round pick in 2015."

According to Damian Cristodero of The Tampa Bay Times, the second-round draft choice becomes a first-rounder should the Rangers make it to the Eastern Conference Finals. 

Jeff Z. Klein of The New York Times notes the swap "took place just hours" before the NHL trade deadline at 3 p.m. EST. The Rangers and Callahan's camp weren't able to agree to a contract extension which was one of the reasons why he was traded. 

Klein stresses the two sides were reaching a compromise within the $6 million range but in the end, Sather just could not grant Callahan's wish to institute a no-trade clause. 

"Callahan, 28, was considered the heart and soul of the Rangers and the embodiment of their scrappy, hardworking style. A two-time United States Olympian from Rochester, he was the team's captain since the start of the 2011-12 season. 

"But his agent, Steve Bartlett, and Rangers general manager Glen Sather could not agree on an extension to his contract, which expires in July."

Sather told Klein it was the no-trade clause which proved to be the deal breaker.

"At some point when you're negotiating you have to say no, or say yes. We had gone too far down the line to come back. Sometimes when you're negotiating a contract you get to an end point where you can't go any farther. We were there, and that's where it had to stop.

"The no-trade was the one thing that bothered me in the end. You give too much away with that no-trade contract. It really ties your hands."  

For his part, Callahan was confident something would be worked out but it just didn't go that way, per Klein. 

"I truly thought we'd work something out that worked for both sides. I said all along going through this that I wanted to stay here and get a deal done, and that was the truth. 

"But it's part of the business that, unfortunately, you have to deal with, and we couldn't find a deal that worked for both sides, so I parted ways with New York. But I have nothing but great things to say about that organization." 

If Callahan chooses to re-sign with the Lightning after this season, the Rangers would get a second-round draft choice in 2015 while Tampa Bay locks up a seventh-rounder in the same draft, according to ESPN New York's Katie Strang. 

On the other hand, Cristodero stresses the 38-year-old St. Louis grew disenchanted with Tampa Bay after he was left out of Canada's men's hockey squad for the Sochi 2014 Olympics. Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman served as executive director of Team Canada. 

Cristodero says St. Louis wanted a trade only with the Rangers as he has an offseason home in Greenwhich, Conn. 

Trade talks between the two teams grew silent since then but apparently intensified in the days leading up to the trade deadline. 

Yzerman, in a statement in Strang's report, acknowledged St. Louis' request and expressed excitement over the Callahan acquisition. 

"We'd like to thank Marty for everything he has done on and off the ice during his outstanding 13-year career in Tampa Bay. He has been one of the greatest players in the organization's history, but in the end we honored his request today.

"We wish him and his family the best of luck as he continues his career in New York.

"The Lightning are very excited to have Ryan Callahan join the organization and help us in our quest to make the playoffs. Ryan is an outstanding player and leader who we look forward to seeing on the ice tomorrow night."  

The Tampa Bay Times report also includes a statement from St. Louis, arguably the greatest player in Lightning history, saying he is thankful for the support he has received. 

"I respect the fact that many of you do not agree with my decision and are angry with it. All I can really say is that I am sorry and I'm very appreciative of the support you have shown me through the years."

Strang stresses St. Louis carries a $5.625 million cap hit next season. 

St. Louis, who was named Lightning team captain at the beginning of this season, had 29 goals and 61 points prior to his trade to the Rangers. Meanwhile, Callahan, the Rangers' team captain prior to the deal with Tampa Bay, has 11 goals and 14 assists for 25 points in 45 games in the 2013-14 NHL season, per ESPN stats

 

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Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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