The 3 p.m. ET Trade Deadline has passed and multiple teams will be welcoming in their newest additions in the next few hours. However, these four squads were better off going with a far different approach after the deadline. Instead, teams around them are getting far better while they sit in the shadows.
4. New York Islanders
The New York Islanders are one of the surprise stories in 2018-19, emerging as the favorite out of the Metropolitan. However, the trade deadline has come and gone without them making a single move. They boast an excellent lineup that's proven it's dominance with the help of head coach Barry Trotz, however a simple depth move would make a difference for the Isles. Luckily, they still have a strong lineup but both the Washington Capitals and Columbus Blue Jackets have gotten significantly better after the deadline. The Metro should become far more competitive down the stretch.
3. Minnesota Wild
The Minnesota Wild were put in a tough situation. Do they trade away the core in order to start a quick rebuild or do they fight for the final spot in the Playoffs? Unfortunately, they didn't really do either option. They dealt Charlie Coyle for a package that includes Ryan Donato who's been strong thus far but it's a unilateral move. Additionally, they traded Mikael Granlund when his stock couldn't be lower for Kevin Fiala, who's younger but has less offensive upside than Granlund. Neither player really helps their Playoff push while nearly every Western Conference team got significantly better at the Trade Deadline.
2. Pittsburgh Penguins
The Pittsburgh Penguins made two significant move at the deadline, acquiring Erik Gudbranson for Tanner Pearson then adding Chris Wideman from the Florida Panthers following injuries to both Kris Letang and Brian Dumoulin. The Pens' already are overpaying for defensive liability, Jack Johnson, on their blue line and now they're devoting to an incredulous $7.25 million to both Johnson and Gudbranson. It doesn't stop there. Gudbranson could be the worst defenseman in the league, posting a league leading -27 on the season and owns the third worst corsi percentage at five-on-five play among D-men with 800 or more minutes. All signs point to Gudbranson and Wideman being absolute train wrecks for the Pens as they fight to maintain a spot in the Playoff race.
1. Calgary Flames
Perhaps the most disappointing team during the trade deadline were the Calgary Flames. The best team in the Western Conference failed to make any significant upgrades other than the addition of Oscar Fantenberg as a sixth or seventh d-man. Meanwhile, the entire West made huge upgrades around their roster. The Jets made six trades on the day including the addition of Kevin Hayes. The Sharks got Gustav Nyquist while the Golden Knights won the day with the acquisition of Mark Stone. The Predators made multiple upgrades including Brian Boyle, Wayne Simmonds, and Mikael Granlund. Meanwhile, the Flames have only Fantenberg to flaunt to their conference rivals.