It's official: Lightning legend Martin St. Louis has been traded to the Rangers for Ryan Callahan, and first- and second-round draft picks (with some contingent minor changes). A bizarre captain-for-captain deal, and one pretty much engineered by St. Louis himself.
The Rangers had to move Callahan. He was seeking a six-year deal for more than $6M per, ridiculous numbers for a half-a-point a game winger. He's going to get that money somewhere, and that team is going to regret it. New York's return, a season and a half of Marty St. Louis, is a fair one.
The story is St. Louis, whose contentious relationship with GM Steve Yzerman reached a breaking point when Yzerman didn't select St. Louis for Canada's Olympic roster. (He was later named as an injury replacement.) St. Louis responded by going on a scoring tear, and demanding a trade. He reportedly told Yzerman he'd only waive his no-trade clause to go to New York, so here we are. It's the sort of thing that would get nearly any other player torn apart.
A sad, crazy end to a 14-year stint as the face of his franchise, who couldn't maintain a working relationship to stay on one of the league's better teams. Tampa, hamstrung by St. Louis's very specific trade demand, couldn't turn him into more than some picks and a rental of a good player—there's little chance the Lightning will, or would want to, give Callahan the money he's seeking.
Here's hoping these teams meet in the postseason.