Is Callahan part of the Lightning’s future?
April, 22, 2014
By Craig Custance | ESPN.com
Mike Carlson/Getty ImagesRyan Callahan was effective in his time with the Lightning. Will they re-sign him this offseason?Just like that, it’s over. Four games lost to the Montreal Canadiens, and one of the most fascinating seasons in recent Tampa Bay Lightning history is done.
This season, we saw Ben Bishop emerge as one of the league’s best goalies. Jon Cooper was the breakout coach of the year -- at least, the one who isn’t also a Hall of Fame goalie. Steven Stamkos broke his leg, yet somehow the Lightning kept winning. Steve Yzerman traded his captain, Martin St. Louis, yet somehow the Lightning kept winning.
It's time to assess what the club should do to prepare for 2014-15, but perhaps the best thing the Lightning can do is lie low for a while, while letting Stamkos recover completely. But when they resurface, these three items need to be at the top of the summer to-do list.
1. Make a decision on Ryan Callahan
This a tough one. Callahan was one of the main pieces in the deal that sent a franchise icon to New York, so you’d like him to stick around. But, there has to be a limit to what a team like Tampa is willing to pay him.
On the open market, he’ll be able to get the $6.25 million he was reportedly asking of the New York Rangers. And maybe that’s a number that works for Tampa, but with a guy like Callahan, term may be as important as money.