The trade deadline is just around the corner and the Metropolitan Division is still very much up in the air. Outside of the Capitals, who have a commanding 15 point lead on the second place Rangers, 6 of the other 7 teams still have a chance for a playoff spot, whether it is for the division or a wild card spot. Injuries have seemed to plague most of the teams in this division so far, but only time will tell to see if these teams are buyers or sellers a week from today:
Washington Capitals: The Caps seem to be pretty set from a team perspective to this point in the year. This team is the best team points considering, with a key piece in Brooks Orpik getting ever so close to returning. They will be buyers at this trade deadline but only to add insurance to the already dominating roster.
New York Rangers: This team has definitely been hurt with injuries this year. Rick Nash is yet to return for the blue shirts and Ryan McDonaugh is now out to with a concussion after his altercation with Simmonds vs. the Flyers over the weekend. With these 2 big key parts being out, there is no doubt that the rangers will be buyers at this deadline, especially after seeing this squad starting to gain their momentum back.
New York Islanders: The Islanders and Rangers have been the 2 and 3 seeds in the metro for the majority of the season so far, but we noticed the islanders fall out of the 3 seed last week before absolutely embarrassing the Oilers and regaining that 3 seed. This team appears that they will definitely have a lot of moves coming. A lot of roster changes will occur with players coming in and out with hopes that they will stay in the top 8, and make a run in the playoffs to prevent players from leaving in the offseason.
Pittsburgh Penguins: The Pittsburgh Penguins have been hitting their stride at late, who have put themselves into one of the wild card spots. This team has already made some big moves, acquiring Carl Hagelin and Trevor Daley. They have had injury problems with Malkin but Crosby has been playing out of his mind, scoring 12 points in his last 4 games. This team could still make some moves in the next couple of days but they are still looking to keep their farm system intact.
New Jersey Devils: This Devils team continues to surprise everyone by being tied for the penguins for the 2nd wild card spot. The Devils shouldn’t be looking to move many of their players unless it is to get rid of Lee Stempniak, and add a forward piece. They will probably stay quiet at the deadline and wait until the offseason to deal with many of the contracts they have with their forwards.
Carolina Hurricanes: The Canes come into this deadline surprisingly only a couple points back of a wild card spot but they have played more games than the teams in there at the moment. This team will most likely stick to the rebuilding stage, which will make them a probable seller at the trade deadline.
Philadelphia Flyers: The Flyers were on a hot streak coming in to this week, but have now lost 3 straight and are 6 points back of a wild card spot. They too are surprisingly still closer to contention at this point in the season than most people would have thought, but the loss of Sean Couturier will definitely have a long term impact on the teams’ playoffs chances. Philadelphia will probably stay quiet as the deadline approaches, not wanting to add any age or salary.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Columbus is the only team in the metro that it is safe to say has almost no chance to make the playoffs at this point in the season. These guys will definitely be big sellers at the deadline after their horrid start to the season.