One day out before the trade deadline, the New York Islanders took on the Philadelphia Flyers. The jury was still out on what the Islanders would do. Are they sellers? Are they some sort of buyer?
No one knows what the Islanders will do at the trade deadline. Not even bench boss Barry Trotz. But with Andy Greene and Cal Clutterbuck being made healthy scratches against the Flyers, the possibility of a trade was understandably quite high.
New York Islanders scratch two players ahead of trade deadline
Both are pending UFA's. The possibility of either being traded was already pretty high for the Isles. Specifically Cal Clutterbuck. The hard-hitting fourth-liner is exactly the type of player that contending teams like to add at the deadline.
He kills penalties, provides depth offense, hits anything that skates, and rarely takes a penalty considering how physical he is.
Andy Greene brought to the Island prior to the 2020 trade deadline, is the type of veteran D-man that teams in the playoffs also like to bring to shore up their blueline.
We were told both players were out of the lineup for "maintenance". And that could very well be true. The Islanders like both players and keeping them for next year (and maybe longer for Cal Clutterbuck) is a real possibility.
The Isles already re-signed the other two members of the fourth line. Cizikas is signed until 2026-27 ($2.5 million AAV) while Matt Martin was re-signed to a four-year $6 million deal back in January of 2021 ($1.5 million AAV). So keeping Cal for a bit longer fits.
But you can't help but think about how convenient the timing is for this move. Again, it could very well be a maintenance day with the Islanders playing just yesterday, but with the trade deadline just 24 hours out and both being UFA's this screams "keeping them injury-free for a deadline move".