James Neal started with the Dallas Stars, and he missed the playoffs with his original team for his first two seasons. He was traded in a deadline deal, along with Matt Niskanen, for Alex Goligoski, which is why Pittsburgh is better than Dallas. That trade occurred in 2011, and James Neal hasn’t missed the playoffs since.
Sure, you could throw me out there with the 2011 Pens and we would still make the playoffs, but after that, the NHL conspired to make things more difficult for Neal. The Penguins eventually traded Neal to the Predators, which, as a franchise, still seems like a pretty dumb joke. They were 6th in the Central when Neal came to town, and then they made the playoffs 3 straight seasons. He was then unceremoniously shipped to Vegas in the expansion draft, and there is no way an expansion team was going to make the playoffs. And then, of course, they did. Now James Neal is in Calgary.
What I’m saying is that the dumbass Flames are making the playoffs this year.