3. The Blues Play in The Western Conference
The Western Conference in the NHL has been the weaker conference over the last few seasons despite capturing back-to-back Stanley Cup champions from the Colorado Avalanche and the Vegas Golden Knights.
While the last two champions have come from the West, the regular season standings have been kind to Western Conference teams. The Western Conference’s eighth and final playoff position has been far more attainable than the final spot in the East.
Last season, the eighth-seeded Florida Panthers upset the greatest regular season team in NHL history in the first round. They proceeded to take the eventual champions to five games in the Stanley Cup final.
The Central Division is also shaping up to be one of the worst in hockey. The Avalanche and Stars will likely occupy the top two spots in the central, and the Minnesota Wild appear to be a lock for third place.
Despite acquiring Connor Bedard in the draft, the Chicago Blackhawks will likely finish at the basement of the division, leaving the Blues, Arizona Coyotes, Nashville Predators, and Winnipeg Jets to capture a potential wild-card spot.
Looking at the Pacific Division, the Edmonton Oilers, Seattle Kraken, LA Kings, and Golden Knights will battle for three guaranteed positions in the West, leaving the Calgary Flames, Vancouver Canucks, San Jose Sharks, and Anaheim Ducks to fight for playoff aspirations.
Assuming that the Pacific Division has four spots locked up, the Blues will realistically be battling with the Flames, Canucks, Jets, and Predators for the final playoff position.
With a deep forward core and better defensive play, it isn’t crazy to think that the Blues can grab 95 points to at least sneak into the playoffs and go from there.