Using the VUKOTA projection system of Hockey Prospectus, Insider is taking the temperature of key players on every NHL team, continuing with the St. Louis Blues. For a detailed explanation of Prospectus' proprietary GVT value metric, read more here.
Note: Because of the lockout, GVT scores for the 2013 season are prorated from 48 to 82 games.
Summer Skate: St. Louis Blues
St. Louis is an amazingly strong team from top to bottom -- fast, young, superbly well-coached and a legitimate Stanley Cup contender. The team made relatively few roster changes, other than shoring up their blue line late last season with veterans Jay Bouwmeester and Jordan Leopold, and replacing Andy McDonald, David Perron and Scott Nichol with Derek Roy, Magnus Paajarvi and Maxim Lapierre.
The Blues finished sixth in the Western Conference last year before a first-round playoff exit at the hands of the Kings. With the new divisional playoff format this season, and the level of competition in the new Central Division, the Blues should have no trouble being in the postseason mix again in 2013-14.
Trending up: G Jaroslav Halak
Last season: -1.0 GVT | VUKOTA projection: 6.8