2023 St. Louis Blues Predictions with Futures Odds and Expert NHL Picks
Summary of last season
The Saint Louis Blues sang the blues last season after managing just 81 points. Though they were plenty capable of scoring a lot of goals, their goalie situation was and still is a complete mess. They allowed 301 goals last season, which was tied for the third most in the Western Conference last season. Other than their goalie situation being awful, all around this team was just below average in everything. Losing record at home and on the road, -38-goal differential, and 7-8 in OT games. They went 9-16-1 in division matchups last season.
C Jordan Kyrou was a big spark for the offense last season, as he led the Blues in points with 73, and his 37 goals was also good for the team lead. LW Pavel Buchnevich finished second on the team in points, with C’s Robert Thomas and Brayden Schenn finishing tied for third on the team with 65 points, with Thomas leading the way with 47 assists. G Jordan Binnington continued that simple below average trend for this team as he posted a 27-27-6 record in 61 games allowing 3.31 GA/G and a lowly .894 SV%.
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Seasons come and go, so now it’s time to take a look at what we can expect from the Saint Louis Blues in 2023-24:
The Blues added some more offense this offseason when they traded for veteran C Kevin Hayes from Philadelphia. Hayes posted 54 points last season for the Flyers and the pass-first mindset will bode well in STL where there are way more goal scorers than in Philly.
Vladimir Tarasenko and Ryan O’Reilly will be missed. However, outside of those two, this team looks practically the same as it did a season ago. They added 29-year-old F Oskar Sundqvist on a one-year deal after the vet tallied 28 points for Minnesota last season.
Potentially selling at the deadline- Schenn and Buchnevich could both find themselves on the trade block if the Blues underperform. Kyrou and Thomas are there for the long run. However, if the aforementioned players a dumped, along with Hayes (if it’s that bad), there would be a lot fewer offensive capabilities. Blueliners Justin Faulk and Torey Krug could also be attractive options for contenders if the Blues do decide to sell. I would expect STL to continue to try and add future capital and would expect them to sell.
Jordan Binnington- see below.
Binnington is back as the starter for the Blues this season. He struggled last season and wasn’t great the year before. It’s been a few years since we have seen Binnington as one of the top goalies in the league. The potential is still there. However, if he performs like last season, it will be a disaster for the Blues and for Binnington. If he can find his 2019-2021 stride, he may earn himself a one-way ticket to a contender. However, if he performs like he has lately, he may get benched.
Twenty-three-year-old Joel Hofer is listed as the backup netminder for the Blues. He appeared in just six games last season, going 3-1-1 with a .905 SV% and allowed 3.22 GA/G. It appears likely that the Blues will try and work him into the starting spot at some point this season.
Key Schedule Stretch
The first half of the season- Similarly to Nashville, it will be a waiting game to see what this club does. I do not expect them to stay relevant for long this season, and I would expect them to try and accumulate some future capital. If they exceed expectations, there are enough pieces in play for the Blues to flirt with the idea of being buyers, but that is unlikely.
Stanley Cup Champions - +7000
Conference Winner - +4000
Division Winner - +3000
To Make the Playoffs- Yes- +200
With the Blues and Predators in very similar positions (and the same point total projections), I am going to take one on the over and one on the under. Nashville has more weapons, and I think the Blues are in some serious trouble this season. They will sell, and it is highly likely they do not improve on their point total from a season ago.
Under 86.5 Team Total Points
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