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NHL notes: Callahan never wanted to leave Rangers

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Callahan never imagined he would be leaving the New York Rangers...

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Callahan never imagined he would be leaving the New York Rangers before he was traded at the deadline. (MIKE CARLSON/Getty Images/AFP)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:05 PM ET

Soon-to-be free agent forward Ryan Callahan says he never considered the possibility of leaving the New York Rangers in the days leading up to the NHL trade deadline.

The Rangers traded Callahan, their captain, to the Tampa Bay Lightning for forward Martin St. Louis after the two sides were unable to reach agreement on a new contract. Callahan was reportedly asking for a seven-year, $49 million deal, too steep a price for Rangers general manager Glen Sather.

"Yeah, I wanted to stay there. I thought I was going to," Callahan told WFAN Radio in New York. "The whole time in my head I never thought about getting traded or leaving at free agency time. My goal was to get something done with New York. Unfortunately, it's the part of the business that's not fun.

"There's a lot of good memories in New York and something I'll miss."

Callahan has two assists in three games with the Lightning after recording 11 goals and 14 assists in 45 games with the Rangers this season. St. Louis has one assist in four games with the Rangers after racking up 29 goals and 32 assists in 62 games with the Lightning in 2013-14.

HABS' PROSPECT IMPROVING

Montreal Canadiens prospect Tim Bozon, a forward with the Kootenay Ice of the Western Hockey League, remains in intensive care in a Saskatoon hospital, the Ice said Thursday.

Bozon, a third-round draft pick of the Canadiens in 2012, has been in an induced coma after being admitted to Royal University Hospital on March 1. The 19-year-old from Lugano, Switzerland, has been diagnosed with meningitis.

"He remains in ICU, however doctors have indicated his condition remains critical but stable and improving," the Ice said in a statement. "He has been in an induced coma since being admitted to the ICU but doctors are now working to slowly wake him. His family has indicated that Tim has responded to verbal stimuli.

"Tim's parents, Philippe and Helene, have been overwhelmed by the e-mail and social media messages from people around the world showing support for their son. The family is very appreciative and will respond sometime in the near future."

The also announced that a trust fund to help the family with medical and rehab costs has been set up by the WHL. Details will be released later this week.

PITKANEN PROGRESSING

Carolina Hurricanes defenceman Joni Pitkanen hasn't played in almost a year but that doesn't mean he's given up on the game.

Pitkanen, who's been out since April 2, 2013 due to a shattered left heel, won't play again this season but the potential unrestricted free agent intends on returning at some point. The 30-year-old was hurt on an icing play during a game against the Washington Capitals.

"There is no timetable as of now, but I've been making progress with my rehab and it remains my goal to resume my professional hockey career," Pitkanen said in a statement. "It's been frustrating to be away from the ice, but I want to thank all of the people who have expressed support throughout the season."

Pitkanen has played just 55 games since the start of the 2011-12 season.

HURTING KESLER SENT HOME

Vancouver Canucks forward Ryan Kesler was sent home to have an injured right knee evaluated after being hurt Wednesday against the Winnipeg Jets.

Kesler will have an MRI on his knee to determine the extent of the damage. He was hurt in a knee-on-knee collision with Jim Slater of the Jets.

It's unknown at this point how long Kesler will be out of the lineup but he will miss at least the next three games, all on the road. The Canucks play in Washington Friday, in Florida Sunday and in Tampa Monday.

CAPS SIGN ORLOV

Defenceman Dmitry Orlov was signed Thursday to a two-year, $4 million contract extension by the Washington Capitals.

The deal, which comes just three months after Orlov demanded a trade out of Washington, will pay the 22-year-old Russian $1.75 million next season and $2.25 million in 2015-16.

Orlov has three goals and six assists in 39 games with the Capitals this season.

NEDVED FINALLY STOPS

Former NHLer Petr Nedved announced his retirement from hockey Thursday, according to Nova Sport in the Czech Republic.

The news comes just weeks after the 42-year-old played for the Czech Republic at the Olympics in Sochi.

Nedved has been out of the NHL since 2007 but spent the last six seasons Liberec Bili Tygri of the Czech league. He played with seven teams, a total of 982 games in the NHL, after being drafted second overall in 1990 and had 310 goals and 407 assists.


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