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Rangers hold their breath regarding Ryan Callahan’s injury status

Apr 5, 2011, 12:14 PM EDT

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Ryan Callahan, Mats Zuccarello AP

Rumors are swirling that well-regarded New York Rangers winger Ryan Callahan suffered a serious injury, with WFAN reporting that Callahan might be out for the season (and presumably the playoffs?) with a broken ankle. ESPN’s EJ Hradek didn’t confirm that Callahan would miss a specific amount of time, but said he also heard rumors of an injury and that “it doesn’t sound good.”

Update: Bob McKenzie also backs up these reports and indicates that a break would actually be better than a high ankle sprain from a healing timeline perspective.

It’s important to note that these stories are in the reports/rumors phase, so there’s a chance that those worries outweigh the severity of a possible injury. Obviously, we’ll let you know once the team or a reporter gives an official verdict on Callahan’s condition.

No doubt about it, if Callahan is out for an extended period of time, this is a huge blow to the Rangers’ chances of making a dent in the playoffs (if they make it). His spirited and rapidly improving play inspired one of the featured videos from Sunday’s NBC Game of the Week, with some thought given to the idea of Callahan becoming a future captain in the NHL.

Callahan already reached career-high totals in goals (23), assists (25) and points (49) this season, despite playing in only 60 games. Yet he’s a catalyst for the team beyond the scoreboard, as his energy, hustle and penchant for throwing around his buddy can be a source of inspiration.

Again, we’ll let you know once something a bit more concrete surfaces, but the Rangers’ resilience could face another serious test if these rumors are founded.

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