New York Rangers right winger Ryan Callahan made a gutsy play late in the third period on Monday night, sacrificing his body to block Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara's rocket of a slap shot. Unfortunately, however, he paid the price.
Callahan suffered a broken ankle on the play, according to head coach John Tortorella, and is out "indefinitely."
The injury couldn't have come at a worse time for the Rangers, who with just two games remaining in the regular season, need three points to clinch a playoff spot. They are currently tied with the Montreal Canadiens (91 points) for sixth place in the Eastern Conference. If the season ended Tuesday, the Rangers would play the Washington Capitals in the first round.
After blocking Chara’s blast, Callahan got up gingerly and skated to the bench. The 26-year-old had emerged as one of the Blueshirts' most consistent offensive players this season. He currently ranks second on the team in scoring with 23 goals and 25 assists in 60 games.
Tortorella told the team's beat writers after Tuesday's practice that defenseman Matt Gilroy would move up to forward, giving the team added depth at the position.
Callahan missed 19 games earlier this season with a broken hand.