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Do You Consider The St. Louis Blues A Serious Cup Contender?

from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,

This time last year, the St. Louis Blues were the sexy pick to run the table and capture the first Stanley Cup in franchise history. They lived up to the billing early, playing like the NHL's best team for a good part of the season before stumbling down the stretch and flaming out in a first-round loss to the Blackhawks.

It was a familiar story to the team's long-suffering fans. Good ... but not good enough. Again.

That frustrating finish revealed some obvious flaws in the makeup of the club. Compared to conference heavyweights like Chicago and Los Angeles, there wasn't enough talent in the middle. There wasn't enough depth up front. There was an awkward mix on the back end.

To compete with the big boys, St. Louis needed more than a fresh coat of paint. General manager Doug Armstrong has delivered. After his active summer, the Blues may finally be ready for their close-up.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

awould's avatar

yes

Posted by awould on 07/16/14 at 05:47 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Actually awould, you are the first one to say yes.  About ten or so followers on Twitter came in with a resounding no.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 07/16/14 at 05:49 PM ET

awould's avatar

My only problem with them is their goaltending, which yeah, isn’t a small problem. I think Stastny and Ott will help them a lot. I can’t imagine how anyone thinks they got worse since last year when all they did was finish 3rd in the tough West and then had the bad luck of facing Chicago in the first round. And if I recall correctly, they hit the injury bug at the exact worst time.

Posted by awould on 07/16/14 at 06:05 PM ET

pautna's avatar

I concur with the Twitter followers. For a team that hasn’t even come close to advancing beyond the second round recently, (i.e., zero second round wins in the last three years) I find it funny that they are brought up at all when discussing cup contenders.

Posted by pautna on 07/16/14 at 07:51 PM ET

awould's avatar

For a team that hasn’t even come close to advancing beyond the second round recently, (i.e., zero second round wins in the last three years) I find it funny that they are brought up at all when discussing cup contenders.

This doesn’t hold up at all. Let’s look at recent history.

The LA Kings missed the playoffs 6 seasons straight, went out twice in a row in the first round and then won the Cup.

The Hawks missed the playoffs 5 seasons in a row, then got shellacked by Detroit in the Conference Finals and then won the Cup. Then lost two years in the first round. And won the Cup again.

Boston missed the playoffs 2 seasons, then went out in 2nd round twice in a row and then won the Cup.

I don’t think recent playoff success is really a reliable litmus test on who is a contender to win the Cup in any given year. There are certainly valid reasons to dismiss St. Louis’ chances, but this argument isn’t one of them.

Posted by awould on 07/16/14 at 08:35 PM ET

alwaysaurie's avatar

Of course they’re a serious contender.

They are a serious contender to win the toughest division in the NHL, & winners of even the worst division are Cup contenders.

Personally I’ve really enjoyed watching the Blues ever since Pietrangelo arrived, and I also think Elliot is more than good enough to win 16 playoff games in a year (to be honest I think Elliot is good enough to win a Vezina this year or next).

Posted by alwaysaurie on 07/16/14 at 08:58 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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