Last season the St. Louis Blues were a pretty good team after 31 games into the season... not so much this season.
What's going on?
This season the team who made some huge improvements to their roster has faltered to a less than attractive record of 12-15-4.
Last season they had 44 points after the 31-game mark, this season a less than average 28 points... or a 36.3 percent drop off. They have a terrible -19 goal differential meaning they are getting outscored on a regular basis.
They place 28th in goals scored, and 16th in goals against.
But wait... isn't this the same team who added some pretty good hockey players?
Players like Ryan O'Reilly, David Perron, and Tyler Bozak.
And, isn't this the same team who has Vladimir Tarasenko, Jaden Schwartz, Brayden Schenn, and Alex Pietrangelo?
They have struggled for much of the season and have not had a winning record since 11-19-18 when they were 6-5-3.
They've lost games by a large margin of four goals in five different games meaning they are getting blown out. They've given up five or more goals in nine games which is never a good omen.
After another disappointing home loss to the Calgary Flames today by the score of 7-2, head coach Craig Berube was clueless what's wrong with his team's effort.
This is what he had to say after being pounded by the Flames.
Inconsistency seems to be plaguing his team, and after the team fired former head coach Mike Yeo after just 19 games with a record of 7-9-3 Berube must be wondering how long he has before he gets his walking papers. After the Calgary loss, his record is 5-6-1.
Are the star players performing?
The above-mentioned players are not doing that badly. O'Reilly leads the team with 13-G,18-A. Tarasenko has 9-G, 11-A. Perron has collected 10-G, 8-A. Schenn has 7-G, 11-A, and Bozak has 3-G, 9-A.
So, did the Blues spend lots of money on free agents to only have them NOT have a winning team?
When you look at the contracts the Blues gave out it seems that may be the case.
O'Reilly got $27.5M after the Blues took over his 7-year $52.5M contract when he was traded to St. Louis.
Perron received a 4-year $16M pact, and Bozak signed a 3-year $15M contract.
Our senior writer C.P. Ching predicted that the Blues would win the Central Division, and so far that's just not going to happen.
In that same article C.P. correctly predicted that Joel Quenneville would be fired... and he was, so who knows how things will turn out? There are still 51 games remaining in the Blues' season to right the ship.
Has the goaltending improved?
Jake Allen had a 27-25-3 record with a .906 save percentage and a 2.75 goals against average last season. This season thus far he has 10-8-4 record with a .901 save percentage and a 3.10 goals against average.
To add salt to the wound, last season the Blues were eliminated from postseason play on the last day of the season. They finished horribly losing five of their final six games and practically gave the playoff berth to the Colorado Avalanche.
They must start determining what they can do to turn things around in the remainder of the season.
If not, then more changes will be headed to the arch city near the Mississippi River before much longer.
Their schedule ahead
Now they must embark on a three-game road trip against three tough teams facing the Edmonton Oilers (8-1-1 in their last ten games), Vancouver Canucks (5-3-2) and face the red-hot Flames (8-1-1) for a rematch again.
If the Blues are going to turn around their fortunes this season they had better get going with that venture soon.
So far, all the positive changes are just not working. Since Berube was hired on an interim basis the way head coaches are being fired of late... he's got to be dusting off his resume in case he gets the word that his services are no longer needed.
What is your observation as to why the St. Louis Blues are just not winning more games this season? Let us know in the comments section below.