St. Louis Blues Rivalry: A report card of Connor Bedard

With the NHL Draft approaching, expectations remain high for Macklin Celebrini. Will Celebrini bring his talent to the NHL and seek to accomplish similar feats as last year's prized selection, Connor Bedard?
Chicago Blackhawks v St Louis Blues
Chicago Blackhawks v St Louis Blues / Dilip Vishwanat/GettyImages

St. Louis Blues fans may be in for a long ride.

The 2023 NHL Draft's first selection went to division rival Chicago Blackhawks, where they selected Connor Bedard.

Bedard, who turns 19 this summer, played in 68 games for the Chicago Blackhawks, with an average ice time of 19:47.

How did Connor Bedard play in his rookie season?

2023-24: 68 games, 22 goals, 39 assists, 61 points.

Connor Bedard shined, recording 61 points in his rookie season.

He led all rookies in regular season play in total points, with the next skater, Luke Hughes, recording 47 points.

Bedard also led the league as a rookie in goals and assists.

Hockey analysts were spot on with Bedard - he not only lived up to the hype, but also dominated on the ice.

Bedard led all Blackhawks players on the roster in points, tied first in goals, and led their team in assists.

Considered a star in the making, Bedard can be the foundational piece for the Blackhawks for the next decade or more.

Given the fact that the Chicago Blackhawks hold the second pick in this year's draft, division rivals such as the St. Louis Blues could be in for several painful years as time continues.

If this year's selection (2nd overall) amounts to anything near Bedard and his talent, Chicago could slowly be creating its unit similar to that of the Colorado Avalanche, surrounded by Nathan MacKinnon or the Edmonton Oilers that are built around Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl.

Chicago is a storied franchise with an impressive legacy and plenty of Cup wins to support the argument that it remains one of the most successful teams in NHL history.

The times are exciting in Chicago and surely nerve-wracking in the rest of the Central Division, as Bedard will only get better and more familiar with NHL play.