Despite winning just once in their last 11 games, the Red Wings haven’t shifted to sell mode just yet, reports TSN’s Bob McKenzie on TSN 1050 (audio link). As a result of what is looking like a fairly weak Atlantic Division, they’re still within striking distance of a playoff spot, sitting five points out heading into play on Friday. If that time does come, however, McKenzie notes that the only true untouchable for Detroit will be Dylan Larkin, who has rebounded nicely after a disappointing sophomore campaign. He adds that wingers Anthony Mantha and Andreas Athanasiou are players that would fall just outside that category but would require a significant overpayment to acquire. Realistically, their most marketable trade chip would be pending UFA defenseman Mike Green, whose offensive prowess would be a boost to several contenders around the league, assuming they can fit in his $6MM cap hit.
More from the East:
- There could be something concrete on the Islanders’ Belmont Park arena proposal in the somewhat near future. Newsday’s Jim Baumbach reports via Twitter that a decision on which development proposal to accept (from the Islanders or NYCFC) could come within the next three weeks. Team owner Jon Ledecky acknowledged earlier this month that there is no current backup arena plan in place should their proposal not be accepted. Under their agreement with Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the team can opt out of its 25-year arena lease in January which lines up well with this potential timeline.
- Senators owner Eugene Melnyk met with the media in advance of Saturday’s outdoor game and spoke of how he has been “underwriting” the team in recent years. When questioned about whether he would consider moving the team, he ruled it out for the time being but suggested he’d be open to doing so down the road (via Luke Fox of Sportsnet): “If it becomes a disaster, yes. If you start not seeing crowds showing up, yes,” he said. “But, for now, we are on the cusp of doing OK.” Despite making the Eastern Conference Final last season, Ottawa ranks 25th in the league in attendance.