The Tampa Bay Lightning sit 10 points out of the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
With more capable goaltending, Steve Yzerman’s team could be in the postseason mix. But for whatever reason, Stevie Y. never made a move to bolster his team in the nets.
So where does that leave his team today?
Is it too late for Tampa Bay to be buyers at the trade deadline? A goaltender like red-hot Evgeni Nabokov, a pending free agent with the Islanders, could make a great big difference.
Has the time come to sell off assets instead? A big forward like Ryan Malone might attract offers from contenders looking to muscle up.
The Lightning went 6-3-1 in its last 10 games, suggesting to Yzerman that they want to play on.
“The team is playing well,” Yzerman told the Tampa Bay Times earlier this week. “We're winning games. There's still lots of time left. … Let this play itself out.”
So far Yzerman hasn’t received any offers that piqued his interest.
“The trade market dictates what, if anything, we're going to do,” he said. “At this point there's nothing that makes any sense that is the right thing to do whether it's short or long term.”