Cleat Geeks

Duelly Noted: Are the Blues Ready for 2018?

The St. Louis Blues are a team that has something to prove after narrowly missing the playoffs in the 2017-2018 season. After such a dismal outcome, Blues fans were pining for a big change of some kind but fan expectations for that change were low. This off-season, Blues GM Doug Armstrong has pulled off some huge moves that can make the Blues dangerous going into the 2018-19 run.

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It all started with some moves that made it seem like the Blues were content with what they had but wanted to fill some holes. The Blues wanted a center and they found one in Tyler Bozak. He now has a deal with the Blues for 3 years at $1.5 million He got 11 goals with 32 assists in 2017 with the Toronto Maple Leafs. After a draft that did not lead to much big news for the Blues this signing garnered something of a mixed reaction from fans as Bozak was not the big signing or trade they hoped for. They assumed the Blues would be done after signing Bozak and the small move of re-acquiring David Perron following his run as a Stanley Cup Finalist for the Vegas Image result for Ryan O' Reilly bluesGolden Knights but the best was yet to come.

The Blues most shocking move this off-season was trading for Ryan O’ Reilly in exchange for Patrik Berglund, Vladimir Sobotka, Tage Thompson and a first round draft pick. Ryan O’ Reilly had a great year with the Sabres last season with 24 goals and 37 assists. O’ Reilly coming to the Blues made the hockey world sit up and take notice because nobody saw it coming. If Ryan O’ Reilly can manage to put up similar or better numbers this season, he can help make the Blues a really tough team to beat.

The last big move the Blues have made is acquiring left winger Pat Maroon. Maroon has a $1.75 million dollar contract for one year. The Pat Maroon signing is an extra special one for the Blues because Maroon is originally from St. Louis and he gets to play close to his family. In the 2017-2018 season, he had 17 goals and 26 assists with the Edmonton Oilers.

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After years of either missing the playoffs outright or making early exits, Doug Armstrong took  what appeared to be a dull off-season at first into a fun and interesting one for the Blues and their fans. It does come with the price of Carter Hutton leaving the Blues for the Sabres but on paper, the positives outweigh the negatives. All the Blues have to do is be ready to execute come October.

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