After a few early exits from the Stanley Cup playoffs, the St. Louis Blues were finally able to make a long run. Granted, they didn’t win the Stanley Cup or make it to the final, but they did manage to reach the Western Conference Final. Unfortunately for the Blues (and a lot of other teams), the NHL’s salary cap number didn’t increase very much and it forced the organization to part ways with a number of key veterans. Gone are captain David Backes, winger Troy Brouwer and goalie Brian Elliott. There could be even more change between now and the start of the year, as Kevin Shattenkirk could find himself elsewhere. Those key departures mean that the Blues will need some of their younger players
Except this time, as I write about Lou Lamoriello, there’s considerably less shock, awe, Eastern Conference plate tectonics and bafflement. Growing up as a New Jersey Devils fan, imagining that Lamoriello would leave the general manager’s chair wasn’t too outrageous.