Rangers set Sochi deadline for Ryan Callahan's future

Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Multiple teams have been given permission to speak with his agent.

The sign-or-trade saga surrounding New York Rangers captain Ryan Callahan will reach a conclusion before the Winter Olympics, if general manager Glen Sather has his way.

According to Larry Brooks of the New York Post, Sather has set next Friday's 3 pm pre-Olympic roster freeze as the deadline for a decision about Callahan's future with the club. The NHL trade deadline isn't until March 5, but the Rangers want to unload Callahan before any potential injuries during the Olympics hurt his trade value.

Brooks also reports that multiple teams have been granted permission to work out a contract extension with Callahan's agent.

Not that the Rangers want to trade Callahan at all. Both sides have indicated that they'd like to work out a deal to keep him in New York, but Callahan's contract demands have both sides at an impasse. The 28-year-old winger is reportedly seeking $42 million over six years, much longer than Sather seems amenable to.

Trading Callahan is an uncomfortable prospect for the Rangers, but Sather's hands are tied. Defenseman Dan Girardi and forwards Mats Zuccarello, Chris Kreider and Derick Brassard are all free agents this summer and will require new contracts. The Columbus Blue Jackets and St. Louis Blues are reportedly in the mix to land Callahan if Sather decides to ship him away.

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