Former New York Rangers captain Ryan Callahan will make his debut as an analyst tonight on NHL Network. Callahan will be on the air with Jamison Coyle and former Rangers goaltender Kevin Weekes at 9:30 p.m. ET for NHL Tonight.
In an interview with Jackie Spiegel of Sporting News, Callahan shared the story of what brought him into the world of hockey broadcasting:
Two or three years ago, the World Cup was going on. I was injured and unfortunately unable to play and the NHL reached out to me and asked if I wanted to come down for the day and do some NHL Network stuff on the World Cup. And I went down and did it, really not expecting to like it . . . and I ended up really enjoying myself being on-air and just talking hockey, sharing my knowledge of what I know and getting inside the game that the average fan doesn’t see or doesn’t realize.
After that, it’s always kind of been in the back of my head the last couple of years that whenever the time came that I was done playing that’d be something I’d be interested in doing. Then, obviously, with my back situation and being hurt this year and not being able to play, the NHL reached out to me again and offered me to do this this year. I wish I was still on the ice but it was a great opportunity for me to jump into it.
Callahan, the 127th pick of the 2004 Draft, played 450 of his 757 career regular season games with the Rangers. He was a four-time recipient of the Steven McDonald Extra Effort Award and is just one of seven players to wear the “C” as the Rangers captain since the team won its last Stanley Cup in 1994.
Then general manager Glen Sather traded Callahan to the Tampa Bay Lightning on March 5, 2014 in the deal that brought Martin St. Louis to the Rangers. On July 30, Tampa traded Callahan to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for goaltender Mike Condon, but the veteran winger’s degenerative back disease forced him off the ice before that trade took place. Callahan is currently on Ottawa’s LTIR — along with Marian Gaborik and Clarke MacArthur.